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What is medical marijuana?

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Quick Answer

Medical marijuana is marijuana prescribed by a physician and obtained at a medical marijuana dispensary, according to WebMD. Doctors prescribe medical marijuana to treat various medical conditions and diseases. People who qualify to obtain medical marijuana are given special cards from their doctors and placed on lists that allow them to buy the marijuana from a licensed dispensary, which is an authorized seller of the marijuana.

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Full Answer

Medical marijuana may be prescribed to treat a variety of conditions, including nausea caused by chemotherapy treatment for cancer and the muscle spasms that result from multiple sclerosis, according to WebMD. It is also used as an appetite stimulant for people with chronic conditions such as nerve pain and HIV, and as part of a treatment regimen for Crohn's disease and seizure disorders.

The main reason that doctors prescribe medical marijuana is for the treatment of pain. This includes pain from diseases such as cancer and conditions like nerve pain and glaucoma. It is also useful in treating headaches.

Not all states allow the legal dispensing of marijuana, but in those that do, the marijuana may be prescribed to be smoked or eaten in candy or cookies. It can also be used in a marijuana vaporizer or consumed as a liquid extract. THC, which is the key ingredient in medical marijuana, is also prescribed to treat nausea and increase appetite, and it is available in two prescription formats, Cesamet and Marinol.

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