First-Ever Trial of Medical Marijuana for PTSD Approved by DEA

ap090818070386_s878x608-800x500-e1461528201430In an amazing step for the advancement of public health, the Drug Enforcement Agency approved a study of cannabis as a treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD, once called shell shock or battle fatigue syndrome, is a serious condition that can develop after a person has experienced or witnessed a traumatic or terrifying event in which serious physical harm occurred or was threatened; most commonly suffered by military veterans. This a serious affliction that, according to Associated Press, affects 1 in every 8 soldiers returning from active duty.

Many have been calling for cannabis to be legalized specifically for veterans suffering from PTSD after seeing the amazing effects the plant has on one’s ability to begin a healthy recovery from psychological trauma. A study published in the journal, Psychoneuroendocrinology, showed that people suffering from PTSD are largely characterized by having significant and long-term reduction in the body’s endocannabinoid system, which is a system absolutely crucial for emotional regulation (to generalize its effects). Understanding cannabis’ special connection to the human body’s natural endocannabinoid system reveals just how perfect cannabis is to treat PTSD on a cellular level.

The non-profit organization Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, or MAPS, announced Thursday it will receive a grant of over $2.1 million from the State of Colorado to study the whole cannabis plant. This will mark the first time a study of this type will have been approved by a federal agency. 

“We have been working towards approval since we opened the Investigational New Drug Application (IND) with the FDA in 2010,” explained Amy Emerson, Executive Director and Director of Clinical Research for the MAPS Public Benefit Corporation. “We are thrilled to see this study overcome the hurdles of approval so we can begin gathering the data. The study is a critical step in moving our botanical drug development program forward at the federal level to gather information on the dosing, risks, and benefits of smoked marijuana for PTSD symptoms.”

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