It is easy to say that marijuana is close to being legalized by the United States Federal Government. As it stands, marijuana is classified as a Schedule I drug by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). This means that marijuana is one of the most strictly regulated drugs, apparently because it is considered to have “no medicinal value” to the public.
But it has now emerged that the US federal government has admitted that marijuana may in fact serve as a useful treatment for brain tumors, one of the most dangerous type of cancers. Brain tumors can occur at any age, and the exact cause of brain tumors is not clear to researchers. The most common symptoms of brain tumors include headaches, numbness or tingling in the arms or legs, seizures, memory problems, mood and personality changes, balance and walking problems, nausea and vomiting, changes in speech, vision, or hearing.
This new stand by the Federal Government is said to be based on a major study published in November 2014 by researchers at the St. George’s University of London, that found that marijuana can be an effective drug to fight brain tumors. The National Institute on Drug Abuse has said in its new revised guidelines that “recent animal studies have shown that marijuana can kill certain cancer cells and reduce the size of others. Evidence from one animal study suggests that extracts from whole-plant marijuana can shrink one of the most serious types of brain tumors. Research in mice showed that these extracts, when used with radiation, increased the cancer-killing effects of the radiation”.
One of the lead researchers of the study, who made the discovery, explained that it is refreshing news that the US government is taking a new stand on marijuana.
Meanwhile, the study has triggered many well-respected personalities across the US to publicly speak their mind about marijuana. In February this year, the new US’s Surgeon General, Dr Vivek Murthy, said that he is optimistic that the US government will stick to its current position on marijuana so that more research can be carried out to fully explore the drug’s benefits, for the benefit of all people.