Nursing: Marijuana: Ancient Medicine, the Devil’s Playground, or Medical Miracle?

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About the Course

Target audience: This course is intended for nurse practitioners responsible for prescribing or managing the care of patients taking marijuana for medical purposes. 

Course overview: This course presents the latest information about medical marijuana. Although the approval and use of marijuana remains controversial, this course will help the reader understand its use and history, and it documents benefits and related best practices. 

Learning Objectives

  • Describe two differences between hemp and marijuana.
  • Identify two marijuana indications according to the United States Pharmacopeia (published before its illegalization).
  • Name marijuana's main psychoactive component.
  • Characterize three dysphoric reactions associated with marijuana use.
  • State potential uses for medical marijuana in the treatment of HIV/AIDS, depression, cancer, MS, and epilepsy.
  • Distinguish the pharmacological activities associated with the CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors.
  • Characterize one potential adverse effect of marijuana on unborn fetuses.

About the Author

Brad Gillespie, PharmD

Bradley Gillespie, PharmD, trained as a clinical pharmacist and has practiced in an industrial setting for the past 20+ years. His initial role was a clinical pharmacology and biopharmaceutics reviewer at FDA, followed by 15 years of leading early development programs in the pharma/biotech/nutritional industries. Currently, he supports efforts at the National Institutes of Health to develop therapeutics for rare and neglected diseases. In addition to his industrial focus, he remains a registered pharmacist and operates a medical writing business, with a focus on developing health professional continuing education programs.

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