Dr. Paola Santander: “Passion for research in Medicinal Cannabis”

Dr. Paola Santander: “Passion for research in Medicinal Cannabis”

I had the opportunity to meet Dr. Paola Santander in her natural environment: the cultivation of Medicinal Cannabis and the laboratory where she investigates Medicinal Cannabis. From the first moment what I perceived was an immense passion for what she does, a great happiness and a huge desire to contribute with her research to the solution of the health problems of thousands of sick people in Colombia and the world.

 

Dr. Paola has been a researcher all her life, to the point that she already has, together with her colleagues, a patent for a product to treat cancer patients. This has been one of his favorite disease of research, made at the time of knowing the laboratory where she conducts her research, I could see first hand how Medicinal Cannabis destroys cancer cells, this has been exciting for me, and even more so to see for myself that research is already being done on Medicinal Cannabis in Colombia.

 

And that is being done by great human beings like Dr. Paola, along with co-investigators, one of them the biologist Dr. Antonio Mejía, with whom we shared this visit, and in whom we saw the same passion that radiates Dr. Paola for the research of Medicinal Cannabis.

 

 

An important part of the work team are the people who collaborate in the cultivation and are pending the Medicinal Cannabis plants. We found Mr. Gustavo and his assistant, collecting the flower and processing it to have it ready for Dr. Paola’s research. Something that Gustavo mentioned, in relation to Dr. Paola; “Before, I was the person who arrived earlier in the cultivation, now it is Dr. Paola who arrives first than me and is looking for the Cannabis plants” and that is how Dr. Paola is, a dedicated and outstanding person. all the details so that your research can meet the proposed objectives.

 

At the end of this visit, my reflection revolves around that “We have researchers who are great human beings and professionals, with excellent Medicinal Cannabis plants that can be grown in Colombia, with people who grow these plants with a lot of passion and dedication, with a solid legislation that allows research in Medicinal Cannabis to be a reality in Colombia and with Colombian patients who long to have different alternatives for their treatments “.

 

We need to get down to work and follow the example of Dr. Paola and start researching with great passion to ensure that in a short time we have the evidence required to give greater evidence to doctors and patients of the benefits of Cannabis Medicinal for your treatments.

Why Medical Cannabis? A Physician point of view

We welcome Cannaciencia to the doctor Francisco Alvarez, certified in Medicinal Cannabis who has gladly shared this article with us:

 

As a physician, I have been studying, working and treating patients with medicinal cannabis for a few years now. Finally, I have decided to write some of my evidence based on experience and knowledge. Recently, a lot more information and research studies have been exposed to the public, thanks to many years of hard work to make the medical cannabis legalization possible in many countries around the world. Also, the ability of the internet and social media to work as an eye-opener for people has raised more awareness around this plant and its amazing medicinal properties. On the other hand, this has left a lot of questions unanswered.Therefore, I decided to share my medical knowledge and opinion in the area, acquired through years of experience in an attempt to clear a lot of controversy in the area.

 

I have always been curious about cannabis or “marijuana” this ancient natural herb that has medicinal properties but it is considered a hardcore drug. I never stopped wondering how this was different than the tobacco in cigarettes people smoke every day. A few years after I was in medical school, me and my fellow students were learning the Endocannabinoid System. Our professor of physiology explained this system is composed by the receptors CB1 and CB2 located in our central nervous system and all throughout our bodies that work like key-locks that only match a specific key. In this particular case, the main keys were Tetrahydrocannabinol commonly known THC and cannabidiol or CBD, the active components of cannabis. After that lesson, I realized this illegal herb couldn’t be as evil as it had been portrayed and thus decided to give it a try. My first experience was very positive and I remember thinking this feels like “a medicinal or shamanic herb” which made me want to go deeper in my studies with cannabis as I felt like I had discovered ‘the holy grail” of medicine.

 

Many years passed since that day and I moved to California to continue my medical studies. Here I had the opportunity to work with patients using medical cannabis as part of their treatment regime, and I saw amazing results and improvement of their overall wellbeing. This just increased my fascination about the medicinal properties of the plant so I went straight to the source the farms and growers. This is where all the magic happens and I gained a lot of respect for this group of humans who are devoted to growing the healthiest marijuana plants, ultimately providing high-quality medicine for the people. Producing clean, organic, sustainable cannabis is not an easy task; but it is definitely a rewarding job for those who like it. Working closely with the master growers of Northern California gave me the opportunity to learn and understand all the details that are required to grow from scratch high-quality medicine for patients; this is why knowing the source of your cannabis starts to matter.

 

The search for the best cannabis and more knowledge didn’t stop there. After November 2016, when a lot more states voted and legalized medical cannabis in the USA, I was invited to enroll in a course in Puerto Rico to get certified as a Medical Cannabis Doctor, Master Budtender and learn more about technical details on cultivation. This was an enlightening experience for me, not only because of all the knowledge I acquired, but also having the opportunity to be a part of this movement of people working to promote and improve health through cannabis. After this course, I was not only completely convinced, but also had scientific evidence and skills to treat and provide my patients the necessary resources to get them started on their healing journey with medical cannabis.

 

Like we said before, there are Cannabinoid receptors CB1, CB2 in your whole body and even an “endocannabinoid system”. This basically means your body is made to receive and interact naturally with THC and CBD molecules mainly found in Cannabis; also an endogenous cannabinoid called Anandamide activate the system. In general, active THC tends to be the responsible for the “psychoactive” or “feeling high” effects of cannabis while CBD has little to non psychoactive properties. Cannabis exists in nature mainly in two forms: Cannabis Indica and Cannabis Sativa. Each with different THC:CBD ratios, concentrations, and effects in the body. Sativas tend to have higher THC:CBD ratios thus having more uplifting and energizing effect. Indicas, on the other hand, tend to have a lower THC:CBD ratio having more sedative and calming effects. There are also plenty of Hybrid strains with their individual THC:CBD ratios according to their lineage. With this in mind, I will suggest for your first encounters with medicinal cannabis to choose strains with high CBD and low THC. This concept also becomes relevant when choosing the right cannabis strains for your specific medical condition as each one will benefit from different stimulation of CB1 or CB2 receptors. Another key point to consider is that cannabis only becomes active when it is “decarboxylated”. This is a biochemical process that only happens at high temperatures above 250 degrees Fahrenheit (121 Celsius). Therefore, it is possible to use Cannabis in its inactive (carboxylated) state in instances such as juicing allowing us to obtain plenty of the medicinal benefits of THC and CBD in a very safe way and without any psychoactive effects.

 

The list of medical conditions that benefit from treatment with medical cannabis is extensive and includes pain, insomnia, anxiety, inflammation, depression, arthritis, epilepsy, Parkinson’s, PTSD, addiction, cancer, HIV and many others. Moreover, healthy people and athletes looking to improve their overall wellness and performance can benefit directly from adding cannabis into their lives. Why should you give this medicinal herb a try? After all that I just told you, I say, why not? “How to start using medical cannabis” is one the most common questions I get. If you happen to live in a place where medicinal cannabis is legal, you have probably noticed the options for consumption are endless from cannabis flowers to candies and kombucha, for that reason, I have dedicated the next article to explain this particular topic.

 

To conclude, I want to invite you to open your mind to the many health benefits of adding cannabis into your daily life. Also, I want you to reflect on the fact that this is a plant that could also be a natural solution for your illness and to improve your overall health. Yes it is that powerful and that is why I am so fascinated by it.

 

References:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3997295/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Endocannabinoid_system
http://norml.org/library/item/introduction-to-the-endocannabinoid-system

Tomado de: http://www.cbdmd.life/es_VE/2017/08/23/why-cannabis/

An approach to Dr. Uma Dhanabalan: Principal Speaker of Cannaciencia

An approach to Dr. Uma Dhanabalan: Principal Speaker of Cannaciencia


Dr. UMA, is a very special human being, the American Chronicle has called her the “Doctor of Cannabis”, but I propose to call her and recognize her as the “Heart Doctor”.

 

Yes, because it is from the heart that she educates, embraces and empowers her patients using her “Total Health Care THC ” model. The use of medicinal Cannabis as an alternative and/or adjunct to improve their quality of life in patients with multiple ailments withchronic and degerative conditions. Dr Uma’s in their treatments.

 

She wants all doctors, health care providers and people to know the facts about cannabis and the endocannabinoid system. Dr Uma states “cannabis is not for everyone yet it should be a first-line option and not the last resort .“ Dr Uma’s for h er dedication to educating people her patients and her medical colleagues was recognized at The Cannabis Business Awards 2017 as the most valuable professional (MVP) in the category “Achievements in Educational achiement Award of Medicinal Cannabis” in the United States.

 

Before becoming a certified family physician in the use of Medicinal Cannabis, she experienced a painful episode in her life, her mother died of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, without which she could have done much to help her, today she knows that Medicinal Cannabis It has been of great help for this type of ailment, that is why from its great heart the purpose is to educate many doctors who can help many patients in this type of ailment.

 

Her heart also harbors a great love for her country of origin; India, and works hard so that very soon the use of Medicinal Cannabis is legalized, and although it seems paradoxical it was from India where Cannabis migrated to the American continent, and many countries like Colombia many patients and people start to benefit for Medicinal Cannabis.

 

For Cannaciencia and for Colombians it is a privilege to have this great human being, who wishes from the bottom of her heart that the Cannabis Medicinal industry is a success in Colombia and she comes to do her bit to make it come true very soon.

The social drama of post-traumatic Stress in the Armed Forces

The social drama of post-traumatic Stress in the Armed Forces

A country like Colombia with more than 50 years of conflict and wars with mafias, drug traffickers, paramilitaries, guerrillas with confrontations, massacres, terrorist attacks that have left more than 8 million dead (almost 20% of the population). In this country, one of the most violent countries in the world, there is ample evidence to believe that post-traumatic stress exists not only in the military and police but also in the civilian population that has been exposed to these traumatic acts of cruelty.

 

The families of soldiers fighters in the war against the FARC suffering from the Stress-Traumatic of their children, parents and brothers, who lost in the first moment they returned from the war, with a irritable, evil and disconnected from the family behavior.
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It is painful to see this situation of people, who by giving the rest of Colombians, the security mentioned in the constitution, have to pay such a high price: in some cases their lives in combat or their lives on returning from combat as a result of the medications that they consume to attenuate the symptoms of post-traumatic stress (mostly opioids) or suicidal tendencies generated by this type of stress.

 

This is a drama lived by thousands of relatives of the military and police, who agreed that they will provide a service to the country, a very expensive and painful service for all.

 

In other countries with more developed economies such as Canada, the United States and Israel, they are taking steps to recover these soldiers for their families and their country. In Colombia there are still no studies, and there has been very little interest in this topic.

 

Colombia is a privileged country, in August of 2016 the Colombian Congress approved a new law that regulates the medicinal use of cannabis, let’s try to work together to put our contribution and power among all to solve the Post Traumatic Stress of both the military and police, as of displaced families and victims of violence.

 

Let’s all work together to hear phrases from children like: “I recovered my dad” after years of [him] being disconnected, irritable and evil “, and wives also saying: “I recovered my husband.” This is a happiness that has no price and for which we want to contribute in this Cannaciencia symposium.

 

Through Dr. Sue Sisley, the only doctor in the world who conducts a clinical study on the benefits of medical cannabis in US veterans with post-traumatic stress, approved by the FDA.

Post-traumatic Stress in the armed forces

Post-traumatic Stress in the armed forces

Anyone, regardless of their age or circumstance, who has experienced a traumatic event may be susceptible to PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder – the inability of some people to extinguish traumatic memories).

 

After a traumatic event, patients with PTSD are likely to feel feelings and thoughts related to the trauma, experience nightmares, memories, emotional distress, and hypervigilance among a host of other symptoms.

 

Post-traumatic stress is mainly due to fear learned. When you have more fear learned, that will induce a state of hypervigilance and that can also cause nightmares and terrors at night. This learned fear makes it difficult to modulate feelings and reactions, especially with respect to situations that trigger memory or trauma experience.

 

The extinction of memory occurs naturally, organically in the average population. However, some people who have experienced a trauma or traumatic event have an impairment to their natural capacity for memory extinction.

 

According to the US National Center for PTSD UU., More than 8% of the US population. UU suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, 26% of which are men and women of military service. In Israel, approximately 9% of citizens have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, a country where military service and reserve duty is mandatory, and who have generally lived in permanent war, post-traumatic stress disorder It is frequent. Canada has some of the highest rates of PTSD, with an estimated 9.4 percent of the population experiencing some form of the disease

 

Conventional treatments against PTSD include powerful sedatives, antidepressants, anti-anxiety drugs and, in extreme cases, antipsychotics. Most of these medications are based on opioids, which can cause a variety of devastating side effects (restlessness, anxiety) and long-term problems (tachycardia, addiction, and suicidal tendencies). This has led to an epidemic of opioids, which has led to a considerable increase in deaths.

 

This has become in these countries a problem that has demanded attention and answers aimed at solving it in a different way.

 

Medical cannabis has been shown to support the extinction capabilities of the body’s endogenous memory, reducing the ability of traumatic memories to trigger the symptoms of PTSD.

 

Cannabis is a much better and safer and more effective alternative. Because of its antisuppressive, anti-stress and anti-depressant properties, it also allows reducing the deficiency of Anandamide, common in patients with PTSD.

 

The most advanced countries in the application of medical cannabis in PTSD are: United States, where the Dr. Sue Sisley is internationally recognized expert, in Canada is Dr. Mike Hart who along with movements such as Marijuana for Trauma (https://mftgroup.ca/) have become standard bearers of the TEP, in Israel are Dr. Irit Akirav of the University of Haifa, and Dr. Yasmin Hurd, and movements such as: Lochamim Lchaim – Fighting for Life (http://lohamim.org.il/).

 

Dr. Sue Sisley is the Principal Investigator of the only FDA-approved randomized controlled trial in the world that examines the safety and efficacy of medical cannabis in combat veterans with treatment-resistant post-traumatic stress disorder. The study is the largest awarded by the Department of Public Health and Environment CDPHE Colorado (US $ 2.1M)

 

Veterans represent 20% of national suicide rate, this translates into 22 veterans who commit suicide every day, in three years the number of veterans who have committed suicide totals 24,000. These veterans correspond to those resistant to the treatment of PTSD.

 

Patients with PTSD suffer a comorbidity rate, which means that they experience more than one condition at a time. 79% of women and 88% of men diagnosed with PTSD also suffer from depression, substance abuse and anxiety disorders. Given the growing evidence that cannabis is a treatment for depression, anxiety and substance abuse, the potential benefit of cannabis treatment for comorbidity is very promising. This, combined with a growing body of evidence that the endocannabinoid system has a role in reducing fear and anxiety, suggests that cannabinoids can also have positive effects in reducing suicidal thoughts and behaviors.

 

There is great potential for medical cannabis to become a multi-therapy, rather than having to take as many different medications for all the symptoms and parallel conditions as monotherapy.

Epilepsy in Colombia

Epilepsy in Colombia

With 450,000 people with epilepsy and a prevalence of 11 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, Colombia is one of the countries with more epilepsy in the world. In comparison with other developed countries that have better access to health and a prevalence of 4 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.

 

1.3% of the Colombian population suffers from epilepsy, a disease that represents 0.8% of the causes of mortality in the country. With regard to these statistics, the Congress of Colombia decreed in 2010 Law 1414, “which establishes special protection measures for people suffering from epilepsy, and dictates the principles and guidelines for their comprehensive care.”

 

This chronic disease that affects people of any age and is characterized by the tendency to suffer frequent seizures caused by abnormal electrical discharges of brain cells. In Colombia, 75% of these people are children under 15 years of age. The World Health Organization decided to include epilepsy among mental pathologies.

 

There is a growing demand for alternative solutions on the part of patients due to the lack of known cures and relief of symptoms. In addition, because one third of this population suffers what is known as refractory or refractory epilepsy, that is, it does not respond to conventional treatments. The majority of patients suffering from refractory epilepsy have unsuccessfully tried several attempts to control seizures with different medications (3 to 5 or more antiepileptic drugs and steroids), without success.

 

Medical cannabis for the treatment of epilepsy gained national attention in the United States when a girl named Charlotte obtained help and research from a Medicinal Cannabis group that revealed a reduction in the frequency of Charlotte seizures from 50 seizures per day to 2 -3 nocturnal seizures per month, these benefits have already been reported by many patients with epilepsy.

 

The Epilepsia Magazine, which is a publication of the League Against Epilepsy, dedicated its entire edition of June 2014 to the review of the uses of cannabis; or that the congress of the American Academy of Epilepsy, which lasts a week and is done once a year, devoted an entire day to lecturing on medicinal cannabis.

 

This notion is supported by empirical evidence published by the Official Journal of the International League against Epilepsy, which revealed that 48% of epileptologists and general neurologists, and 98% of patients with epilepsy would advise medicinal cannabis in severe cases of epilepsy.

 

Officially, the Colombian health system only treats epilepsy with orthodox or conventional treatments, which are not being successful. As of August 2016, the Colombian Congress approved a new law that regulates the medicinal use of cannabis and allows the commercial cultivation, processing and export of products derived from it.

 

According to the government, this is a step forward in changing the repressive drug laws of the country and orienting them to public health for the benefit of many patients and likewise calls for doctors and researchers to work on the issue. It is expected that treatment based on cannabis, expand to new medical alternatives once the law is fully implemented, with special emphasis on the treatment of epilepsy with medicinal cannabis.