Essay by malakasUniversity, Master's March 2004

download word file, 10 pages 5.0 2 reviews

Marijuana is a green, brown, or gray mixture of dried, shredded flowers and leaves of the hemp plant, Cannabis sativa. Marijuana is often called by street names such as pot, herb, weed, boom, Mary Jane, gangster, reefer, or chronic. There are more than 200 slang terms for marijuana. HISTORY: Cannabis was acknowledged as early as 2,700 BC in Chinese manuscripts. Marijuana has been used as a medicine throughout the world since the beginning of written history. During this time, companies such as Lilly, Parke Daivis, Tildens, Squibb, and other major drug manufacturers, have made everything from sleeping elixirs, to stomach medicine from marijuana. These drugs were even knowingly prescribed for children. Since 1839 there have been numerous reports in favor of utilizing medical marijuana. In 1839 Dr. W.B. O'Shaugnessy, a respected member of the Royal Academy of Science, was one of the first in the medical profession to present the true facts concerning marijuana and medicine.

Dr. O'Shaugnessy's report states clearly, that experience indicates the use of marijuana to be a beneficial analgesic, and to have anticonvulsant, and muscle-relaxant properties. He found it to be effective in treating rheumatism (inflammation or pain in muscles or joints), epilepsy, and spasmodic conditions. In 1860, Dr. R.R. M'Meens, indicated to the Ohio State Medical Society, the usefulness of marijuana in treating tetanus, neuralgia (pain in the nerves), uterine hemorrhage, child labor, convulsions, asthma, bronchitis, and even postpartum psychosis. It was also noted for its affect as an appetite stimulant. This is desperately needed in modern medicine especially by cancer and aids patients to prevent them from literally wasting away. Many of these patients have indicated that no other remedy helps to stimulate the appetite as effectively as smoking a small quantity of marijuana. It was also noted that smoking the natural plant was...