ALTERNATIVES TO MEDICAL CANNABIS

  • ALWAYS TREAT THE CAUSE OF DISEASE RATHER THAN JUST TREATING SYMPTOMS
  • Medical cannabis has the potential of palliating symptoms that may be indicators of an underlying disease process
  • Always consult and inform your physician about any symptoms that may arise, whether or not they are relieved by medical cannabis
  • Never stop looking for an underlying cause or cure for your symptoms
  • Obtaining a second or alternative medical opinion is always good practice
  • Naturopathic doctors are licensed primary care physicians in Arizona that focus on treating the root cause of disease. They use natural therapies such as botanicals, acupuncture and Chinese medicine, nutrition, homeopathy and physical medicine to name a few
  • Modern medicine is rapidly evolving. Consult your medical physician(s) regularly concerning new/alternative treatments for your condition
  • Prescription Marinol is a pharmaceutical, synthetic form of THC that is FDA approved and available in the United States
  • Sativex is a trademarked tincture consisting of THC and cannabidiol available in some countries outside the United States, such as Canada
  • SIGNS & SYMPTOMS OF SUBSTANCE DEPENDENCE AND ABUSE

The dialog of substance abuse is ongoing and has many different perspectives. The simple medical view can be broken down to chemical and psychological dependence and substance abuse. Dependence is the continued need to use a substance. This may be caused by a chemical dependence, meaning one will potentially become ill or have medically significant withdrawal symptoms if they quit or decrease the dose of the substance. Opiate based drugs and medications such as morphine and heroin are known to cause strong chemical dependence. Other substances may not have a strong chemical dependence. This is associated with an intense uncontrollable sensation or desire to use the substance, discontinued use may result in mood imbalances and symptoms such as irritability. Cannabis (marijuana) is not associated with a chemical dependence. However, it does pose potential for psychological dependence. Substance abuse is simply defined as the continued use of a substance even though it is causing problems in an individual’s life.

  • THINGS TO LOOK FOR TO HELP IDENTIFY SUBSTANCE DEPENDENCE AND ABUSE
  • Increase in substance seeking behavior
  • Increases in the amount of substance being used
  • Cannot stop using substance despite desire or attempts to quit
  • Continued unaffordable spending of money on substance
  • Spending excessive amounts of time thinking about how to get and/or getting the substance
  • Engaging in dangerous or illegal activities under the influence of the drug or to obtain the drug
  • Neglected appearance and changes in behavior and/or socially inappropriate behavior

SUBSTANCE ABUSE PROGRAMS AND REFERRAL INFORMATION

Contact the Regional Behavioral Health Authority in your region of the State

Western Judicial Services
9550 W. Van Buren St. #11, Tolleson AZ 85353
623-936-8828, westernjudicial.com

Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc.
3639 W. Lincoln St., Phoenix AZ 85009
602-233-9747, CPLC.org

Community Bridges, Inc.
824 N. 99th Ave, Avondale AZ 85323
877-931-9142, communitybridgesaz.org

Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc.
6850 W. Indian School Rd., Phoenix AZ 85031
623-247-0646, CPLC.org

Intensive Treatment Systems, LLC
4136 N. 75th Ave. #116, Phoenix AZ 85033
623-247-1234, itsofaz.com

Addiction Resources Inc.
4337 W. Indian School Rd. #105, Phoenix AZ 85031
602-233-9401, addictionresourcesinc.com

Patient Tracking System

LOG FOR CANNABIS USAGE, SYMPTOMS, AND SIDE EFFECTS

Guidelines for notifying your physician.  A daily log or journal is the best way to evaluate one’s benefit and/or negative effects from medical cannabis use. Patients should use these logs to self-evaluate symptoms, effects and benefits as well as to provide this information to the physician that is recommending their medical cannabis use. Symptoms are very important to the treating physician. Please be as specific as possible, including details of onset, quality, duration, associations and severity.

  • Severity of symptoms can be quantified with a number scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the most severe and 1 being the lease severe
  • Be sure to immediately notify recommending physician of any side effects that occur as a result of cannabis use

ITEMS TO BE RECORDED REGARDING MEDICAL CANNABIS USE INCLUDE:

  1. Symptoms or reason for using medical cannabis
  2. Amount and type of cannabis utilized
  3. Method of use
  4. Positive effects and/or relief from symptoms
  5. Unwanted side effects

A patient symptom tracking log is provided on the following page to assist in documenting information. This daily log can be photocopied and used to record the above information

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