Medical Marijuana in Florida: Partaking Safely and Legally

Medical marijuana derives from the cannabis plant. Its derivatives relieve many conditions. Epilepsy is a type of seizure disorder. The FDA-approved drug Epidiolex reliably delivers relief for certain rare forms of epilepsy.

Studies done on hemp revealed a chemical in it to be effective for treatment. Chemicals in cannabis sativa L, or hemp, are called cannabinoids. The particular cannabinoid of interest to those with an uncontrolled seizure disorder is cannabidiol, or CBD. Epidiolex is a plant-based, purified version of CBD. It treats severe and/or intractable Gravet and Lennox-Gastaut syndromes. This is the only lab-tested, government-regulated CBD treatment.

A physician may recommend treatment with Epidiolex for other types of uncontrolled epileptic seizure. In certain specific cases, patients start taking CBD and show remarkable improvement. However, neurologists strongly caution patients to take any CBD product under the guidance of a doctor . It is likely that another active ingredient in hemp, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), increases tenfold the risk of sudden unexplained death in epilepsy (SUDEP). Epidiolex has no THC in it. Over-the-counter CBD oil and hemp do.

Extensive foreign research and small domestic trials point out the most likely illnesses that would benefit from cannabis treatment. These include anxiety, inflammation and pain, chemotherapy-caused nausea and vomiting, MS-caused spasticity, anorexia, and the weight loss associated with AIDS or cancer. The cannabinoid-derived drugs dronabinal (brand names Marinol and Syndros) and nabilone (Cesamet) are FDA-approved. They contain THC, which reduces the nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy.

Florida has made it legal for any qualified patient to decide to try medical marijuana for these conditions:

  • epilepsy
  • cancer
  • nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy
  • glaucoma
  • post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Crohn's Disease
  • irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • migraine
  • arthritis
  • Parkinson's Disease
  • multiple sclerosis (MS)
  • chronic nonmalignant pain
  • anorexia
  • anxiety
  • any terminal condition

Also, the following conditions are often covered:

  • endometriosis
  • premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
  • sleep disorders
  • fibromyalgia
  • autoimmune disease

To get a certification in Florida, collect your medical records pertaining to any of the above conditions. A specialty physician service like Cannabimed can help you navigate the state certification process. To get certification, south Florida residents may contact Cannabimed (786-734-7543 or cannabimedfl at for a home consultation. A house call with a Cannabimed doctor is both convenient and discreet. For affordable fees, you may get initial evaluation or follow-up visits. You may transfer over from another physician and/or receive assistance applying for an ID card. Health insurance covers nothing related to medical marijuana because it is still illegal under federal law. Cannabimed does not sell cannabinoid products, but it can help you qualify for the Florida ID card. An ID then allows you to buy cannabis in many forms at a state dispensary.

With the ID card, you have legal access to much better quality products than are found "on the street." Regrettably, these products (with the exception of Epidiolex, dronabinal, and nabilone) are not regulated or approved by Florida or the FDA. Their quality is similar to herbal remedies or nutritional supplements. Their producers may make unfounded statements and include more or less of the active ingredient of THC or CBD (or both) without the consumer knowing. Quality may well vary from batch to batch. Also, these products can have negative cross-reactions with other drugs or alcohol. Adults may safely consume under the care advice of a doctor. Common products include CBD oil, pills, leaves and buds, and lotion. Smoking or vaping will result in faster effect. Ingestion is the slower option.

Adolescents who begin using any type of cannabinoid products have much higher rates of addiction than adults. One in ten of those who use them frequently under the age of 25 becomes addicted. It is suspected that cannabinoids interfere with proper adolescent brain development. Please keep these products away from teens.

Author's Bio: 

Health & Wellness writer and enthusiast.