Florida's Office of Compassionate Use

The Department of Health of the State of Florida established an office to regulate and educate the community on the use of medical cannabis in Florida. This office is called the Office of Compassionate Use and is accessible online at www.floridahealth.gov and then scroll to the Office of Compassionate Use. The information provided on the website remains current with Florida laws explains the processes and steps that a patient must undertake before obtaining a recommendation for medical cannabis in Florida.

1 . Medical Cannabis
Florida has labeled the term Medical Cannabis to include the use of marijuana that comprises all types of active agents. Therefore the cannabis may contain active THC, CBD, CBN, CDB or any cannabinoids that may be found in the plant.

Medical cannabis has found promise in the treatment of hundreds of diseases. A very extensive list may be found at www.marijuanadoctors.com or other reputable medical websites.

In the scope of neurological disorders, medical cannabis has found promise in the treatment of epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s Disease, catatonia, neuropathic pain, tremor, sleep disorders, glioma tumors, and other disorders.

2 . Low-THC Cannabis
This designation in Florida is a description of medical cannabis that has less than 0.4% THC by weight. The majority of the cannabis is typically comprised of cannabidiol (CBD). This agent is one of many cannabinoids found in the plant cannabis. The agent CBD has been shown to have strong antiepileptic activity and certain actions against certain tumors, amongst other actions. The action of CBD against seizures is sufficiently strong that some patients may use it as front-line therapy for seizure prevention.

In Florida, the 2012 and 2013 statutes that were passed by legislature legalizing medical cannabis allowed the use of low-THC cannabis for certain disorders including seizures and conditions causing persistent spasms.

3 . Endocannabinoids and their functions
The human body has been shown to possess receptors for cannabinoids. These were first discovered in the brain in … The first receptor was called CB1 and is primarily located in brain tissues. The second receptor isolated was found in … and has been named CB2. This receptor is primarily localized to peripheral tissues including gastrointestinal locations and others.

Realizing that receptors exist in the body for cannabinoids, we will naturally wonder what natural products in the body exist to interact with these receptors. These agents have been found and they are called endocannabinoids. The most commonly cited endocannabinoids are anandamide and 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG).

These agents are implicated and involved in multiple bodily functions including pain perception, gastrointestinal function, sleep function, and other functions. This auto-regulation (regulation by the body) can therefore be augmented or interfered with by changes in levels of endogenous cannabinoids or cannabinoids introduced from outside (exogenous). The cannabinoids from inside and outside the body work through the same enzyme systems to cause the same effects on body systems.

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