LCHM Fall 2017 - 22

PRACTICE
MANAGEMENT

MEDICAL MARIJUANA
BY BRUCE NICHOLSON

During a time when the opioid crisis in Pennsylvania has
led to greater scrutiny surrounding prescribing of opiates,
patients seeking pain relief often face limited options.
Although the state has begun to address the opiate
misuse problem and ensure they remain available as a
treatment option, another type of pain-relief medication
has become the de facto treatment for many patients:
nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
While many people think that NSAIDs are relatively
low-risk medications, a study by the American Journal of
Medicine found that annually, around 107,000 Americans
are hospitalized for gastrointestinal (GI) complications
due to NSAID use.

22
22 Lehigh County Health & Medicine | FALL 2017

And at least 16,500 NSAID-related deaths occur among
arthritis patients alone. If the Center for Disease Control
counted the number of fatal GI toxicity issues caused by
NSAIDs in its National Vital Statistics report, it would
be listed as the 15th most common cause of death in
the United States.
Recent data surrounding heart disease and NSAID
use has lead the FDA to require labeling of all NSAIDs
including those sold over the counter to warn patients of
the potential cardiac risks.Several studies have produced
substantial results showing that cannabinoids - the chemical
compounds found in medical marijuana - reduce pain
and are approximately 20 times more potent than aspirin
as an anti-inflammatory.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of LCHM Fall 2017

LCHM Fall 2017 - 1
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https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LehighCountyHealthMedicineSummer2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Spring20
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Winter19
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Fall19
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Summer19
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Spring19
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Winter18
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHM_Fall18
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMSummer18
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMSpring18
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMWinter2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMWinter18
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/Fall2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMSummer2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/LehighCountyHealth_Medicine/LCHMSpring2017
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