Cannabis for Northern Irish arthritis sufferers?

The subject was raised at Ballymena Borough Council. James Currie noted that many wealthier Arthritis sufferers are able to get on a plane to Amsterdam and buy the drug freely and return with a supply to help with pain management. But the government considering reclassifying it as a category A drug, which may put that avenue of in danger. Charles Clarke has cited evidence that smoking cannabis doubles the risk of incurring mental ill health.

  • Robert Keogh

    From the article cited in the BBC report Addiction 100:354 –

    “The results are consistent with two major conclusions.

    First, the use of cannabis and rates of psychotic symptoms were related to each other.

    Secondly, the results of structural equation modelling suggest that the direction of causation is that the use of cannabis leads to increases in levels of psychotic symptoms rather than psychotic symptoms increasing the use of cannabis. Indeed, there is a suggestion from the model results that increases in psychotic symptoms may inhibit the use of cannabis.” The emphasis is my own and the use of “suggest” and “may” equates with “has not been proven”.

    The article goes on to state “The demonstration that cannabis use and psychotic symptoms remain associated even following control for confounding suggests a causal linkage, but does not establish the direction of causality.” Meaning it has not been established by this paper whether cannabis causes increased psychosis or those who abuse cannabis already have a predisposition to psychosis.

    When examining studies like this one must always remember that correlation does not prove causation.

    While cannabis is great for hangovers its minor medical benefits are far outweighed by the damage smoking it does to the lungs. These “medical benefit” arguments are rather spurious but are far less ridiculous than criminalising cannabis while tobacco and alcohol are legal. Of the three cannabis poses the least health risk.

  • eranu

    its always amusing to here scientists and any other people talking about the effects of drugs, when they have never actually taken the drugs themselves and so can only make an educated guess at what the effect is. ask people who use cannabis is my advice.
    as regards mental health problems for people using cannabis, as any smoker will tell you, if you smoke alot every day it will do your head in a bit. ie, the drug will constantly be in your system and your brain doesnt get a chance to get cleared of the trippy effects of cannabis.
    moderation is the key for most things. drinking is an example that most people can relate to as most people know what the effects are. you wouldnt drink a bottle of wine every day? or a bottle of vodka every day? it wouldnt be good for your body and it wouldnt be good for your brain, especially if you are working the next day. everyone knows this, its just common sense.
    cannabis is pretty much the same, in moderation its enjoyable and can relieve suffering for some people. just dont go overboard or you’ll have problems, just like everything else…

  • Jo

    Its in the government interests to play up the *dangers* of cannivos (which they discourage) and play down the danger of alcohol, which they encourage thru 24 hour drinking…anyone else see a slight inconsistency? Anyone ever deck anyone while under the influence of a few spliffs?

  • Belfast Gonzo

    Alcohol leads to thousands of deaths every year in the UK and Ireland.

    Smoking spliffs leads to the fridge or cookie jar.

    You tell me which is most damaging…

  • Ghost of PDN Past

    Whoooooaaa Dudes! Arthritic joints? Roll a fresh one. Psychosis! Why do you think they call it dope?