Use of marijuana for medical purposes
More details
Hide details
Department of Healthcare Organizations and the Medical Jurisprudence, School of Public Health, Centre of Postgraduate Medical Education, Warszawa, Poland
National Bureau for Drug Prevention, Warszawa, Poland
University of Humanities and Economics in Lodz, Poland
Piotr Jabłoński   

National Bureau for Drug Prevention, Warszawa, Poland
Ann Agric Environ Med. 2016;23(3):525–528
Cannabis is the most popular illicit drug on the European market. Over 16 million young Europeans have used it at least once in the last few years. The recent trends in the consumption of marihuana differ between countries. Some countries face an increase in the prevalence of cannabis use, including Poland, where the level cannabis use has been systematically increasing since the 1990’s. According to a recent ESPAD study, 19% of Polish adolescents aged 15–16 have used cannabis in the last year. Marihuana is also a leading substance when analyzing the data of seizures and crimes. The recent EMCDDA Annual report on the drug situation in Europe notes the increasing potency in cannabis available on the market. Some countries face an increasing number of emergencies caused by marihuana, which was unlikely to have happened previously. In almost all European countries there is an ongoing discussion about loosening marijuana laws or its complete legalization. There is also ongoing discussion on the use of marihuana in therapy as a medicine. Many scientific studies are being conducted in this field. Some of the results are promising; however, there is no well-designed human trial which would unequivocally confirm that medical cannabis is effective as a medicine, or more effective than other medicines on the market. The problem is that the debate on the medical use of marihuana becomes more ideological and less professional. The medical use of marihuana is strongly supported by organizations lobbying for the legalization of cannabis use. Research on the medical use of cannabis should be continued, as there are some promising results supporting therapy in different medical conditions. However, the use of cannabis as a medicine should be discussed only among professionals. If marihuana is to be used for medical purposes, the fact that it is the most popular illicit drug in Europe is irrelevant.
European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction. European Drug Report 2016: Trends and achievements pp. 19, 33, 38–39, 75, Publications Office of the European Union, Luxembourg; 2016.
Sierosławski J. Używanie substancji psychoaktywnych przez młodzież szkolną Województwa Wielkopolskiego. Badanie ankietowe (ESPAD), Warszawa 2015 [The use of psychoactive substances by school students of the Wielkopolska Region. The survey (ESPAD), Warsaw 2015] (in Polish).
Malczewski A. Młodzież a substancje psychoaktywne w Młodzież 2013, Fundacja Centrum Badania Opinii Społecznej, Warszawa 2014 [Young people and psychoactive substances in the Youth 2013 Foundation Center for Public Opinion Research, Warsaw; 2014] (in Polish).
Jablonski P. Medyczne używanie konopi [Medical use of cannabis]. Serwis Informacyjny Narkomania 2015; 3(71) (on Polish).
Metts J, et el. Medical marijuana: A treatment worth trying. J Fam Pract. 2016; 65(3): 178–185.
Kielar M. Marihuana na ziemi niczyjej [Marijuana no man’s land]. Służba zdr. 2015; (4494–4501): 56–59.
Habrat. Marihuana, jej preparaty farmaceutyczne i ich analogi w zastosowaniu medycznym [Marijuana, the pharmaceutical preparations and their analogues in the application of medical, pharmacology of cannabinoids]. Farmakologia kannabinoidów, XXXII szkoła zimowa Instytutu Farmakologii PAN 2015, Kraków (in Polish).
Cerda M, Wall M, Keyes KM, Galea S, Hasin D. Medical marijuana laws in 50 states: Investigating the relationship between state legalization of medical marijuana and marijuana use, abuse and dependence. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2012; 120(1–3): 22–27.
Pacula R, Powell D, Heaton P, Sevigny E. Assesing the effects of medical marijuana laws on marijuana use: the devil is in the details, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25... dated 08/24/2016.
Szulc M. Konsekwencje zdrowotne używania marihuany w świetle badań oraz propozycja ujednolicenia stanowiska psychologów wobec problemu legalizacji konopi, sformułowana w oparciu o Kodeks Etyczno-Zawodowy Psychologa [The health consequences of marijuana use in the light of research and the proposal standardize the position of psychologists to the problem of the legalization of cannabis, formulated on the basis of the Code of Ethics and Professional Psychologists]. Alkoholizm i Narkomania 2013; 26(4): 381–401 (in Polish).