Category Archives: Research

Research On Medical Marijuana

A comprehensive study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that the medical claims for medical marijuana are mostly based on weak evidence, anecdote, and wishful thinking.

“There is some evidence to support the use of marijuana for nausea and vomiting related to chemotherapy, specific pain syndromes, and spasticity from multiple sclerosis,” the accompanying editorial said. For other conditions – including PTSD – the evidence is poor.

For a host of legal and other reasons, marijuana hasn’t been rigorously tested on a large scale. But, the people who promote and sell marijuana make a great many unsubstantiated claims about its efficacy about its “medicinal qualities.”

To date, medical marijuana has been legalized in 23 states, as well as in Canada.

Approved drugs are standardized, with specific doses and a limited number of uniform ingredients that are subject to strict quality control. The same cannot be said of marijuana, even medical marijuana.

http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/article-abstract/2338230

Placebos and Pain

According to a study published in PAIN, the Medical Journal of the International Association for the Study of Pain on October 13, 2016, placebos can produce real benefits beyond the psychological trick placebos are known for creating.

Research revealed that the pain medication group experienced a nine percent reduction in usual pain, a sixteen percent reduction in maximum pain, and no reduction in disability.

Research also revealed that the placebo group experienced a thirty percent reduction in both usual and maximum pain, and twenty-nine percent reduction in disability.

The study results arrive at the same conclusion as a similar study published two years ago that also studied the effects of placebos on pain reduction and disability.

http://journals.lww.com/pain/Abstract/publishahead/Open_label_placebo_treatment_in_chronic_low_back.99404.aspx

SUGGESTED READING

http://journals.lww.com/pain/Abstract/2015/12000/Increasing_placebo_responses_over_time_in_U_S_.27.aspx

http://journals.plos.org/plosbiology/article?id=info:doi/10.1371/journal.pbio.1002570

http://www.neurology.org/content/early/2015/01/28/WNL.0000000000001282

http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2010/12/22/the-power-of-placebos/

https://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/the-placebo-effect/

More Autism Research Surprises

Over the last couple of years, the big news in autism is that autism presents differently in girls than in boys.  This is why it goes undetected in girls far longer, and why it takes longer for girls to be diagnosed with autism.

Additionally, autism research has shown that girls with the same genetic mutations as boys diagnosed with autism don’t always develop autism.  Understanding the role gender plays in autism will prove beneficial in treating autism in both males and females.

While there is no blood test to confirm or rule out autism, there are a number of factors considered.  Read more via this link.

http://www.pnj.com/story/news/2016/10/26/girls-autism-often-mask-condition/92779942

The Difference Between O and Zero

Researchers clear up the history behind AIDS, HIV, and Patient Zero.  While researching the epidemic, it was learned the disease went undetected by doctors for several years after it arrived in the U.S. from Haiti in 1970 or 1971.

Those diagnosed with HIV who were interviewed by behavioural scientist William Darrow were identified with letters and numbers.  The first person interviewed from Los Angeles was therefore LA1.  Those being interviewed lived in California, however, one common person with whom many had contact was Gaetan Dugas who was identified in the media as Patient Zero.  This led readers to believe he was the first person to have HIV, and that he was responsible for its spread in North America.

The fact of the matter is that Patient Zero was actually Patient O which stood for “outside California.”

Details of the research was published in Nature on Wednesday, 26 October 2016.

STUDY:  http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nature19827.html