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The Use of Medical Marijuana in Cancer


The use of medical marijuana in cancer care presents a dilemma for both patients and physicians. The scientific evidence is evolving, yet much of the known information is still insufficient to adequately inform patients as to risks and benefits. In addition, evidence-based dosing and administration information on medical marijuana is lacking. Medical marijuana is now legal, on some level, in 24 states plus the District of Columbia, yet is not legal on the federal level. This review addresses the current state of the research, including potential indications, risks and adverse effects, preliminary data on anticancer effects, as well as legal and quality issues. A summary of the clinical trials underway on medical marijuana in the oncology setting is discussed.

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Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: •• Of major importance

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Correspondence to Shauna M. Birdsall.

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Shauna M. Birdsall, Timothy C. Birdsall, and Lucas A. Tims declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

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This article is part of the Topical Collection on Integrative Care

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Birdsall, S.M., Birdsall, T.C. & Tims, L.A. The Use of Medical Marijuana in Cancer. Curr Oncol Rep 18, 40 (2016).

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