Cannabis bedside manner, with Janosch Kratz, MD
Play • 28 min

When Janosch Kratz first sees a patient about medical cannabis, beyond their medical history, he wants to know how they react to other medications and even alcohol.

If someone gets drunk off half a beer, he explains on The Cannabis Enigma Podcast, he’s more likely to start them on a lower dose of cannabis. And because cannabis is most often prescribed for chronic conditions, taking it slow and getting it right is more important than immediate relief.

“To estimate what kind of patient I have in front of me is one of the most important things to know how I start dosing,” explains Kratz, who has practiced in medical cannabis clinics in Spain, Portugal, and Germany.

The difference of prescribing cannabis in different countries, beyond the different regulations and availability of the medicine, often comes down to local culture and stigmas around marijuana in general.

“The stigma is there for the doctor, the stigma is there for the patient as well, and a lot of people don’t talk about it. They feel kind of guilty by using it. People with other medical drugs like opioids or benzos feel completely normal and the cannabis patient feels like he is doing something wrong,” he adds. “We need to educate them as well so they’re comfortable with that treatment.”

In the second half of the episode [19:50], Dr. Roni Sharon discusses using cannabis to treat sleep problems. Dr. Sharon explains who is a good candidate for treating sleep issues with cannabis, how he recommends taking it, and why it doesn’t work for everyone.

Produced by Elana Goldberg and Matan Weil, edited and mixed by Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man. Music by Desca.

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