Saturday 23 April 2016

Medical Marijuana Glossary

Aeroponics: Where plants roots are suspended in air so that nutrients and water can be sprayed into the root zone in the form of fine mist.

Analgesic: A type of drug used to achieve analgesia (relief from pain).

Anandamide: This is a neurotransmitter that plays a role in pain sensation, memory, and sleep. THC is believed to interact with parts of the brain normally controlled by anandamide.

Autoflower cannabis: A type of Cannabis that will enter the flowering stage at any time despite any growing conditions.

Axil: The joint between the leaf or leaf stalk and the stem that carries it.

Bhang: A preparation from the leaves and flowers (buds) of the female cannabis plant, smoked or consumed as a beverage.

Bong: A smoking device used to filter marijuana smoke. Water is generally added to help with the filtration process.

Brownies: Preparations made from marijuana and rolled into little balls, then smoked

Bud: Refers to the buds or flowers of the marijuana plant, sold for recreational drug use. In botany, the term refers to the undeveloped shoot of a plant, normally occurring in the axil of a leaf or at the tip of the stem.

Butter:  A butter-based solution which has been infused with cannabinoids. Sometimes called "Magical Butter", "Cannabutter", "butterjuana", or "marijuana butter".

Cannabis (plant): Cannabis is an annual flowering herb, indigenous to Central Asia, and South Asia but capable of being grown worldwide. The genus Cannabis contains two species which produce usable amounts of psychoactive cannabinoids. Cannabis indica produces a higher level of Cannabidiol relative to THC (the primary psychoactive component in medical and recreational cannabis). Cannabis sativa, on the other hand, produces a higher level of THC relative to cannabinoids.

Cannabis (drug): An alternative name for marijuana.

Cannabis Club: A group of people who join together to supply medical marijuana to patients.

Cannabis subculture: A counterculture terms for groups of people united by a common understanding of the meaning and value of the use of marijuana.

Cannabidiol: After THC, the second most abundant constituent of the Cannabis plant. Cannabidiol is less psychoactive than THC. However, it is considered to have a wider scope of medical applications, including to epilepsy, multiple sclerosis spasms, anxiety disorders, Bipolar Disorder, schizophrenia, nausea, convulsion and inflammation, as well as inhibiting cancer cell growth.

Cannibinoids: Cannabinoids are a group of terpenophenolic compounds present in Cannabis and occur naturally in the nervous and immune systems of animals. The Cannabis plant contains over eight different cannibionoids. These are sometimes referred to as phytocannabinoids to contrast them with the cannibinoids that naturally occur in the brain (endocannabinoids).

Cannabinoid receptors: Specific membrane-bound receptors in the bodies of animals, including people. They are affected by cannibinoids. There are two types of receptor: CB1 receptors, which are found primarily in the brain; and CB2 receptors, which are found in the immune system.

Cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1): One of the two known receptors in the endocannabinoid (EC) system associated with the intake of food and tobacco dependency. Blocking the cannabinoid receptor 1 may reduce dependence on tobacco and the craving for food.

Cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2): One of the two known receptors in the endocannabinoid (EC) system. It is related to immune activity.

Central Nervous System: Part of the body that contains the majority of the nervous system and consists of the brain and the spinal cord. It has a fundamental role in the control of behavior.

Chromatographic techniques: Describes a set of laboratory techniques for the separation of mixtures.

Clinical trials: Sets of tests in medical research and drug development that generate safety and efficacy data (or more specifically, information about adverse drug reactions and adverse effects of other treatments). They are normally controlled by national regulators.

Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol: See THC.

Depressant: A drug compound that lowers or depresses arousal levels and reduces excitability.

Dispensary: A service that dispenses medications and medical supplies. In a traditional dispensary set-up a pharmacist dispenses medication as per prescription or order form. in parts of the U.S., medical marijuana is sold in specially designated stores called dispensaries or "compassion clubs".

Drug testing: THCs can be measured in blood, urine, hair, oral fluid or sweat using chromatographic techniques. The Duquenois-Levine test is commonly used as a screening test.

Duquenois–Levine Test: An established screening test for the presence of marijuana. Marijuana (as well as a variety of other plant substances) becomes purple with the addition of the Duquenois reagent and hydrochloric acid. Upon addition of the organic solvent, the purple color transfers to the organic layer, indicating that cannabinoids may be present.

Edibles: Food products made with cannabis in herbal or resin form, including hash brownies and space cakes.

Efficacy: A drug is considered to have efficacy if it produces the desired effect. It can also be used as a relative term, to indicate that one drug is more efficacious than another.

Endocannabinoid system: A term given to a group of lipids and receptors that are involved in a variety of physiological processes. The ECS an important component in many different homeostatic processes in living organisms, including food intake, energy metabolism and reward processing. Certain cannabinoids, including THCs, can affect the ECS.

Euphoria: A medically recognized as a mental and emotional condition in which a person experiences intense feelings of well-being, elation, happiness, excitement, and joy.

4:20 (four-twenty): A code-term that refers to the consumption of cannabis and by extension, as a way to identify oneself with cannabis subculture or simply cannabis itself.

Gateway theory: The theory that the use of less deleterious (noxious) drugs may lead to a future risk of using more dangerous hard drugs. It is attributed by some that the use of marijuana might lead to the user trying for dangerous drugs.

Hallucinogen: Psychoactive drugs that can cause subjective changes in perception, thought, emotion and consciousness.

Hashish: A cannabis product composed of compressed or purified preparations. It can be in a solid form or as a paste. The prpearation of hashish means that it has very high levels of THC and other cannabinoids. Hashish is consumed by consumed by being heated in a pipe or a vaporizer.  The term is sometimes abbreviated to 'hash'.

Hash oil: This is a resinous matrix of cannabinoids obtained from the cannabis plant by solvent extraction. This process makes the oil very potent in THCs (with some forms having a concentration of 60% THCs). The oil is consumed using a vaporizer or it can be rubbed onto the skin.

Hemp: A term for varieties of the Cannabis plant and its products, which include fiber, oil, and seed. Hemp is refined into products like hemp seed foods, hemp oil, wax, resin, rope, cloth, pulp, paper, and fuel.

Hemp wick: A hemp rope dipped in beeswax. It can be used for smoking marijuana.

Hybrids: Cannabis plants that are a cross between Sativa and Indica.

Hydroponics (Hydro): A method of growing plants, like Cannabis, using mineral nutrient solutions, in water, without soil. Plants can be grown with their roots in the mineral nutrient solution only or in a medium like perlite, gravel, mineral wool, expanded clay pebbles or coconut husk.

Indica: An abbreviation for the plant Cannabis indica. Indica is used to refer to marijuana sourced from the plant. Cannabis indica tends to have a higher cannabidiol content than Cannabis sativa strains (or sativa marijuana).

Infusions: Where marijuana is mixed with the solvent and then pressed and filtered to express the oils of the plant into a solvent. The solvent can be used in cannabis foods or applied to the skin.

Intravenous: Intravenous (IV) medications are a solutions administered directly into the venous circulation via a syringe

Kief: A powder, rich in trichomes (Sticky resinous growths on the Cannabis plant), which can be shifted from the leaves and flowers of cannabis plants and either consumed in powder form or compressed to produce cakes of hashish.

Marijuana: A dry, shredded mix of flowers, stems, seeds and leaves of the Cannabis plant. Marijuana produces psychoactive and physiological effects when consumed. The immediate effects from consuming cannabis include relaxation and mild euphoria. The term is synonymous with 'cannabis'.

Marihuana: An alternate spelling of “marijuana,” most common in the early 1900s. “Marihuana” appears in Canada’s Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. As a result, Health Canada uses “marihuana” in legal documents related to the Act, such as Marihuana Medical Access Regulations.

Marihuana Medical Access Regulations (MMAR): Canadian government regulations that allow approved and licensed patients to possess and use marijuana to treat specific medical illnesses or conditions. To read the Marihuana Medical Access Regulations online, visit:

Medical  marijuana: The parts of the herb Cannabis used as a form of medicine or herbal therapy.

Medical necessity: In the United States medical necessity refers to legal doctrine, related to activities which may be justified as reasonable, necessary, and appropriate, based on evidence-based clinical standards of care. In some other countries the term clinical medical necessity is used.

Nausea: Stomach queasiness, the urge to vomit. Nausea can be brought on by many causes, including medications or pain.

Neuron: An electrically excitable cell that processes and transmits information through electrical and chemical signals.

Neuroprotection: Refers to mechanisms and strategies used to protect against neuronal injury or degeneration in the Central Nervous System (CNS) following acute disorders (such as stroke or nervous system injury/trauma) or as a result of chronic neurodegenerative diseases (for example, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, Multiple Sclerosis).

Neurotransmitter: Chemicals in the body that transmit signals from a neuron to a target cell. There are a range of different types in the body, for example one neurotransmitter (acetylcholine) has a role in connecting motor nerves to muscles; whereas dopamine controls pleasures related to motivation and also emotional arousal; and serotonin regulates appetite, sleep, memory and learning, temperature, mood, behaviour, muscle contraction, and function of the cardiovascular system and endocrine system.

Oils: Cannaoils or marijuana oils are cooking oil based products that have been infused with cannabinoids. This is accomplished by performing an extraction of certain chemical constituents of cannabis into the oil through various methods.

One-eighth/half-quarter: Usually refers to an eight on an ounce. Used commonly when talking about drugs, especially marijuana. Equals our to around 3.5 grams.

Percolator: A small sub-chamber inside of a water pipe (or bong) that provides a smoke-water interaction via dissolution. It allows more filtering of the smoke through water.

Pharmacology: The branch of medicine and biology concerned with the study of drug action.

Phytocannabinoids: Phytocannabinoids are only known to occur naturally in significant quantity in the cannabis plant. They are alternatively known as also called 'natural cannabinoids, herbal cannabinoids, or classical cannabinoids.

Placebo-controlled: A term used to describe a method of research in which an inactive substance (a placebo) is given to one group of participants, while the treatment (usually a drug) being tested is given to another group. The results obtained in the two groups are then compared to see if the investigational treatment is more effective than the placebo.

Pot: A slang word for marijuana. Other 'street terms' include: bud, cheeba, chronic, dagga, dak, dank, dope, doobage, draw, dro, electric puha, frodis, ganja, grass, green, hash, hay, herb, indo, instaga, kind bud, killer bud, kind, leaf, Mary Jane, nugget, nug, pot, reefer, schwag (low quality), sensi, skunk, sticky-icky-icky, tea, tree, wacky tobacky, weed.

Potency: A measure of the activity of a drug in a biological system, expressed in terms of the amount required to produce an effect of given intensity.

Psychoactive: Psychoactive substances often bring about subjective changes in consciousness and mood that the user may find pleasant (e.g. euphoria) or advantageous (e.g. increased alertness).

Psychoactive drug: A chemical substance that crosses the blood–brain barrier and acts primarily upon the central nervous system where it affects brain function, resulting in alterations in perception, mood, consciousness, cognition, and behavior. Psychoactive drugs are prescribed for the management of mental and emotional disorders, such as depression.

Psychotomimetic: A drug with actions that mimics the symptoms of psychosis, including delusions and/or delirium, as opposed to just hallucinations. Some cannabinoids are psychotomimetic.

Purity: Refers to how much of the required active ingredient is present in a drug relative to unwanted material or additives. With marijuana, purity normally refers to the proportion of THC present.

Resin: A hydrocarbon secretion of many plants, including Cannabis. It is found on the trichromes of the plant and is used for making marijuana. Sometimes referred to a 'plant tars'.

Sativa: An abbreviation for the plant Cannabis sativa. Sativa is used to refer to marijuana sourced from the plant. The plant produces higher levels of THCs than the other main cannabis plant, Cannabis indica.

Shake: A term for marijuana crumbs or 'weed crumbs'. These are the small bits of marijuana bud that settle to the bottom of a bag. Sometimes called ' shwag'.

Smoking: In relation to marijuana, smoking involves inhaling vaporized cannabinoids ("smoke") from small pipes or a vaporizer.

Spasticity: An unusual tightness, stiffness, or pull of muscles. In extreme cases a lack of inhibition results in excessive contraction of the muscles, ultimately leading to hyperflexia (overly flexed joints).

Stimulant: Psychoactive drugs which induce temporary improvements in either mental or physical functions or both.

Sublingual: A term for using strips or drops of marijuana under the tongue.

Synthetic cannabinoids: Chemicals that are analogous to cannabinoids, such as those found in the Cannabis plant. They are based on the structure of herbal cannabinoids.

Tea: Cannabis tea is made by first adding a saturated fat to hot water (e.g. cream or any milk except skim) with a small amount of cannabis. Cannabis tea contains relatively small concentrations of THC because THC is an oil and it is only slightly water-soluble.

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC): The principal psychoactive constituent of cannabis. As well as being psychoactive, THC has mild to moderate analgesic effects and can be used for the treatment of pain. Other effects include relaxation, alteration of visual, auditory, and olfactory senses, fatigue, and appetite stimulation.

Tincture: Cannabinoids can be extracted from cannabis plant matter using high-proof spirits (often grain alcohol) to create a tincture. To be classified as a tincture, the extract should have an ethanol percentage of at least 40–60% or 80–120 proof.

Titration: A laboratory method of quantitative chemical analysis that is used to determine the unknown concentration of an identified substance.

Toke: A phrase meaning to inhale marijuana smoke.

Toxicology: The study of the adverse effects of chemicals on living organisms, including the study of symptoms, mechanisms, treatments and detection of poisoning, especially the poisoning of people.

Toxicity: Toxicity is the degree to which a substance can cause damage or harm. Toxicity can be physical, chemical or biological. 

Trichomes: THC-producing resin glands of the cannabis plant (specifically the sticky coating). Hairs or trichomes may be formed on all parts of a plant as outgrowths from an epidermal cell.

Vaporizer: A device used to extract for inhalation the active ingredients of Cannabis. Vaporization is an alternative to burning (smoking) that avoids the inhalation of many irritating toxic and carcinogenic by-products.

Posted by Dr. Tim Sandle

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