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Is Sativex The Same As Marijuana?

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sativex marijuanaSeveral days ago I saw a news article about medical marijuana being legalized in France, and I eagerly clicked on the link only to learn that medical marijuana was NOT legalized in France- Sativex was.

I explored other news stories and found a similar theme in several articles. The authors were equating the distribution of Sativex with the legalized use of medical marijuana. Comments on these articles often contained some bitter bickering between proponents of the plant and supporters of the notion that the chemical compound Sativex is equivalent to cannabis.

Sativex is the European trade name for a chemical compound called Nabiximol, a pharmaceutical product created only for prescription-based use by GW Pharmaceuticals. They grow vast quantities of cannabis in England to create the drug. Nabiximol is distributed in Europe by Bayer Schering Pharma, where it costs approx. 4 Euros per day to use; it is marketed and distributed in Asia, Africa and the Middle East, with some exceptions, by Novartis.  It has been distributed to 29 countries at least, including some where its use is not controlled by prescription regulations. It is distinctly different from Marinol, a product that imitates the effects of cannabis compounds but does not actually contain chemicals derived from marijuana.

Nabiximol is a chemical compound delivered by oral spray and is often recommended for multiple sclerosis and to control neuropathic pain and spasticity. According to Wikipedia, “The drug is a pharmaceutical product standardised in composition, formulation, and dose, although it is still effectively a tincture of the cannabis plant.” It is a tincture lacking the full spectrum of 60+ cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, having been refined to contain only a few.

But does that make Sativex equivalent to medical marijuana? That depends on your definition of medical marijuana- and your definition of corn.

Marijuana is a plant that grows in the ground. If you take the flowers of that plant, dry them out and add nothing to them, you have smokable marijuana. If you take the green, growing leaves, stems and immature flowering buds and run them through a juicer you have raw cannabis juice. The stalk can be used for animal food or ground into high-quality fiber stock.

You can steep the flowers in alcohol, agave or glycerin and create a tincture.  Through heating, chemicals from the flowers transfer into the liquid medium which is then cooled and sipped- or, in the case of Sativex, sprayed. Cannabis tincture is considered to be a medical marijuana product.

Corn is a plant that grows in the ground. If you take the ears from the plant and add nothing to them, you have eatable corn. The stalks have some uses commercially. To create high-fructose corn syrup, you take the eatable ears, mash them up, extract from them the good stuff, chemically refine it, add some vitamins and preservatives and then toss it in a package for food companies to use. At least that’s what I saw on tv.

When does corn stop becoming corn and start becoming high fructose corn syrup? When additional chemicals are added, any chemical compound becomes a compound of a different name. Corn mash is a corn compound; adding a chemical to extract out the fructose turns the mash into something different, a corn slurry with a different chemical composition. The addition of preservatives and additives make it a new compound yet again. The substance those ears has become can never just be called ‘corn’ again.

So a tincture is not medical marijuana- it is a compound that contains the medical benefits of marijuana. Or is it? Michigan law defines marijuana as not only the plant but all the salts, esters (what the heck is that, anyway?) and compounds created from it. That’s the rule they use when the cops confiscate your medibles. Tinctures like Sativex contain the essential components of marijuana and therefore are legally considered to be marijuana. In Michigan, if the person holding the tincture bottle has a registration card from the MMP, it is medical marijuana.

Can something be two things at once? For example, if a minor is registered in the MMP and is holding a bottle of alcohol-based tincture, is he a minor is possession of alcohol? Are the parents that gave him the medical marijuana compound guilty of providing alcohol to a minor, or contributing to the delinquency of a minor? Can that bottle in his hand be considered legal medicine, and illegal booze, at the same time?

Sativex has the same concerns. Once licensed for distribution in America by the FDA, it will be marketed in all 50 states by Otsuka Pharmaceuticals, which acquired the rights to market and distribute the drug throughout the USA. But wait- how can that be? Sativex is both marijuana and medicine. All 50 states consider the salts, esters and compounds of marijuana to be marijuana, so how could Sativex ever become available to anyone in those 31 states without medical marijuana laws? Will the doctors be charged like drug dealers? Does the FDA have the power to overrule the DEA?  Did France actually legalize medical marijuana when they legalized Sativex?

The answers lie in the definition of “legalizing medical marijuana”. In America we identify marijuana as the smokable form of the plant- which 19 states have decided has medical benefits. Non-smokable forms of cannabis flowers have medical benefits too, but it’s fair to say they were not popularized when the 19 states voted on their laws. Since there is no acceptable form of prescription-based pharmaceutical analog for marijuana, every use of the term medical marijuana in the US for forty years or more has been in reference to the smokable form of cannabis.

When journalists say Sativex is “legalized medical marijuana” they are both incorrect and functionally deceptive. It would be more correct to say “legalized medical marijuana product”, but in fact if it was a marijuana product it would, by definitions of the Controlled Substances Act, be illegal. Or is it? Sativex is entering Phase III trials in the United States, and is quickly charging toward FDA approval- and toward the pharmaceutical counters in all 50 states. Can Sativex be two things at once- both an illegal marijuana product and a medicine, too?

Many have wondered what Obama will do, if anything, about the medical marijuana issue during his presidency. Hell, we ALL have wondered what he’s doing (other than filling jail cells) but perhaps the image is more clear. When Sativex is ready to hit the market Obama will announce that he’s dropping cannabis to Schedule 2, which he will see as a triumph and the marijuana community will see as betrayal. He can go on record as the man that legalized medical marijuana without actually legalizing medical marijuana. The DEA can continue to act as they always have, the Justice Department can keep on prosecuting, no treaties have to be reworked and Sativex will be legal to prescribe in all 50 states. You heard it here first.

Source: The Compassion Chronicles

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About Author

"Rick Thompson was the Editor in Chief for the entire 2-year run of the Michigan Medical Marijuana Magazine, was the spokesman for the Michigan Association of Compassion Centers and is the current Editor and Lead Blogger for The Compassion Chronicles. Rick has addressed committees in both the House and Senate, has authored over 200 articles on marijuana and is a professional photographer." Rick Thompson Is An Author At The Compassion Chronicles and focuses on all things Michigan.

  • Anonymouse

    What? This article takes a long time to say pretty much nothing. Sativex isn’t approved in the US. It’s tincture made from marijuana. They have different products with different ratios of THC to CBD and other cannabinoids. No, it’s not pot, but it’s made from pot. The idea is that since it’s taken sublingually/transdermally, it’s supposed to hit people faster kind of like smoking. THC and most other cannabinoids are alcohol soluble, so that’s why they would use it as a base. It will also help with absorption. Alcohol is in all sorts of medications. It’s in the main component in the bottle of Binaca breath spray in my pocket right now. It’s in most mouthwashes. No, they wouldn’t bust kids for having medicine with alcohol in it. That’s just silly.

    The biggest problem with Sativex is that it’s super expensive. It’s probably better than Marinol because you wouldn’t have to swallow a pill and keep it down, and it has other cannabinoids besides THC, and it should work much faster than a pill. But both products are super expensive. Pot is usually cheaper than beer per use. For me it’s usually pennies per use because I don’t need much and don’t consume more than I need. Couple of small hits of medical grade weed and I’m good to go. Either Marinol or Sativex would probably cost me hundreds per month more than plain old Mary Jane. I couldn’t afford either. Some smoke a lot more than me, but Marinol or Sativex would probably be cost prohibitive for most of them too. And I’m not even talking about people who go to the trouble of growing their own. I’ve never done that, and most people don’t.

    • Old Hatter

      Alcohol based mj is a product sold as a pharmaceutical?! Some of us knew that it was more effective that way 40+ years ago when experimenting. The trick of filling a bong with schnapps instead of water was an eye opener for many back then. History has a way of repeating itself.

    • painkills2

      According to what I’ve read, any alcohol products (like mouthwash or Bianca) are not good for the inside of your mouth. People are complaining about the current strength of toothpastes too. For some it’s just irritation, for others it’s mouth sores. Just sayin’.

  • Chris Furney

    The only difference between Sativex and old school Rick Simpson oil is the virus that marijuana gets in the spring when its too damp. Sativex doesn’t cure cancer- RSO does.

  • Sativex is cannabis. All this article has done is cast doubt on that simple and profound truth.

    It is nonsense to say that any of the compounds present in the plants from which it has been made are “filtered out”.

    CLEAR has been pursuing the Sativex scandal for some years. The truth about Sativex is here: http://www.clear-uk.org/the-truth-about-sativex/

  • oh dear what these crafty folks did was add the carbon back to thcv after it was vapourised in heat turning it to delta 9 how do you do that … take a whole plant grind it up stick it in a sealed vapouriser pressurise it with just carbon dioxide and heat the hell out of it… simples eh…

    • As John correctly explains, Sativex is an WHOLE PLANT extract. It contains all the cannabinoids, flavonoids and terpenes present in the plants from which it is made. It is pharmacologically identical to cannabis.

      You buy into the prohibitionist propaganda by casting doubt on what it is. The UK government has now placed it in schedule 4 using a 75 word definition whereas every other drug in every other schedule is one word.

      As Geoffrey Guy, Chairman of GW Pharma, is proud to proclaim, Sativex “contains 420 molecules when every other medicine contains just one”

      • the_old_islander

        Sativex contains only TWO cannabinoids, gentlemen. Once a fine honey-oil stuff is extracted from ground buds by critical-phase liquid CO2 solution, the THC and CBD are refined from that, and they are the only cannabis constituents present in the final product… ratio 1:1.

        I’ve been watching the development of the stuff for 16 years… and Geoffey Guy’s off the cuff statement is utterly full of shit, or the stuff would not be legally available in Canada – where it’s legally labelled to contain only GW’s THC and CBD isolates.

        • Absolute nonsense. This is the myth that the British government is still promoting although GW has given up trying to sustain what is a blatant lie,

          • Mike

            I’d like to see some citation that Sativex contains any active ingredients other than THC and CBD. All the product lit I can find is specific about citing these and does not mention any other cannabinoids. For instance (on page 15):

            http://www.drugs.com/uk/pdf/leaflet/165219.pdf

            And at this link:

            http://www.mstrust.org.uk/information/publications/factsheets/sativex.jsp#whatis

            MPP suggests it may have something other than THC and CBD, but provides no specifics.

            http://www.mpp.org/reports/questions-and-answers-about-sativex-liquid-medical-mariju.html

            I don’t doubt that the prohibitionists are capable of some BS to cover up that Sativex is a whole plant extract in hopes of concealing the fact that the plant does have medically accepted uses and benefits. It’s just that I want to see some verification of it containing any cannabinoids other than THC and CBD. Where’s the science and analytical testing that confirms it’s more than THC and CBD?

            I definitely agree that, like marinol, it’s ridiculously over-priced, whatever is in it, compared to natural marijuana.

            And I certainly sympathize with the notion that extracts such as sativex fall short of natural cannabis in safety and effectiveness and should be avoided, if possible. However, as a patient in a so far non-MMJ state, having an alternative to nothing is still desirable until the laws are adjusted to reflect reality, not some Bible-thumping craziness.

        • Shorty Hofmann

          The purest form of cannabis on the Legal Market. they don’t even know how many cannabinoids there are in cannabis I’ve read that there are 470 kinds not just 420 (nice number but no cigar).. You can see GW’s process on youtube. they are not removing other cannabinoids I dont think they can even do that.

          • There are believed to be around 100 cannabinoids of which 60 – 80 have so far been identified. Geoffrey Guy says there are 420 compounds in cannabis, Ethan Russo says 421. This includes flavonoids and terpenes.

        • Shorty Hofmann

          YOU ARE WRONG SATIVEX IS A WHOLE PLANT PRODUCT. YOU COULD SPRAY IT ON A CIGARETTE LET IT DRY AND SMOKE IT SAME AS A JOINT. GW DOES NOT HAVE THE TECH TO EXTRACT CANNABINOIDS .. THEY DON’T EVEN KNOW HOW MANY THERE ARE IN THE CANNABIS PLANT THE ONLY WAY TO GUARANTEE LEVELS OF THC AND CBD IS THROUGH FINDING THE RIGHT STRAINS. GW HAS SAID THAT THEY USE SPECIAL STRAINS IN ORDER TO PRODUCE SATIVEX.

          • the_old_islander

            Ummm… a statement you think important enough to display in all caps is all the better for support, don’t you think? How many are there, how are they extracted and why is that too expensive for them to do (considering that they”re already selling a single large plant’s juice for more than $8000)?

            I don’t disbelieve you… yet.

          • madmatt6773

            Straight from the horses mouth, GW Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer of Sativex;
            “Sativex® contains active ingredients called ‘cannabinoids’, which are
            extracted from cannabis plants grown and processed under strictly
            controlled conditions. It is composed primarily of a 1:1 ratio of two
            cannabinoids-CBD (cannabidiol-a non-psychoactive cannabinoid) and THC
            (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol)”

            “There is no evidence to suggest that Sativex® produces a ‘high’ comparable to recreational cannabis.One
            of the cannabinoids in Sativex is THC whereas the other principal
            cannabinoid is CBD, a non-psychoactive molecule. Evidence suggests that
            CBD may modulate many of the unwanted effects of THC. Hence, through the
            incorporation of CBD and the utilization of an oromucosal spray
            delivery system which is administered through careful self-titration
            (dose adjustment) and which keeps THC from entering the blood too
            rapidly, patients are able to obtain symptom relief without experiencing
            a ‘high’.”

            http://tinyurl.com/o5dg3ul

            Two cannabinoids, not the whole plants worth. Among the missing; Cannabigerols (CBG), Cannabichromenes (CBC), Cannabinol (CBN) and cannabinodiol (CBDL), other cannabinoids (such as cannabicyclol (CBL), cannabielsoin (CBE), cannabitriol (CBT) and other miscellaneous types).

            http://tinyurl.com/m3lr3jh

            Spraying it on a cigarette will only make the cigarette wet, it won’t get you high.

            And “yelling” with your cap lock on just makes you look like an idiot.

          • I regret @madmatt6773 that your interpretation of this is wrong.

            Now, to prove it your satisfaction I believe I shall have to furnish you with copies of several FOI requests to the MHRA, GW Pharma patent applications, other GW documents and independent laboratory analyses of Sativex.

            Do you want to give me an email or how shall we go about this?

          • madmatt6773

            Post the links here.

          • madmatt6773

            Post the links here.

          • madmatt6773

            How about the links mein Fuhrer? I’m waiting…

          • Wayne Kerr

            Don’t hold your breath, this is the douche bag you’re dealing;

            http://peter-reynolds-watch.com/

          • If you are prepared to buy the ridiculous lies in the Peter Reynolds hate site then I can quite see how you go hook, line and sinker for the more subtle and intelligent propaganda on Sativex.

            You might ask yourself why anyone would go to the bother of constructing such a total falseood about someone who dedicates his life, for no personal gain, to ending the prohibition of cannabis.

            You are buying exactly what ‘they’ want you to think – that Sativex is not cannabis. The communications strategy of the worldwide prohibition force is falsely to distinguish Sativex from cannabis. In fact, It is pharmacologically identical to the cannabis plants from which it is made. It is an extract of all the compounds present in the plants produced by a novel process using cannabis grown to extremely high quality standards.

            The myth that it is just CBD and THC fell apart at least three years ago and I’m sorry you haven’t caught up yet. Even GW themselves no longer try to sustain it, only the propagandists and governments.

            I and several other long term campaigners have worked diligently and tirelessly on a succession of FOI requests and challenges. Sativex is cannabis.

            But you rude, aggressive, gullible muppets can do your own research. The time involved in posting the full story here is far better spent dealing with decent and courteous people with sincere intent. You can follow me if you wish, as more people do on the cannabis issue than anyone else in the UK. You can find all the info you ask for on my and the CLEAR website

            Final hint. Ask yourself why, in re-scheduling Sativex under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations, the UK govt has had to use a 75 word definition of Sativex (nabiximols) when every other drug in all five schedules is defined by just one word.

          • richard bong

            i.e.; I don’t have time to pull my head out of my ass so I can pull something else out of it to post. Sieg Heil!

          • painkills2

            I want to thank you for providing me with my first chuckle of the day. “…someone who dedicates his life, for no personal gain…” Too, too funny. And here I thought people from England had no sense of humor.

          • richard bong

            And this Limey shill is sticking his nose into our business why? England, home of warm beer and soccer hooligans, I thought we already kicked their sorry asses out.

          • Wayne Kerr

            Why yes we did, exactly 237 years ago this glorious 4th of July day we sent the Pommy Cod Gobblers packing! Then we kicked their sorry Limey asses again in 1812 before having to save them from the Germans in two World Wars.

          • Freebird

            Please leave England out of this… we’re not all the same stereotype and unfortunately our government seem to agree with yours when it comes to drug legalisation or prohibition. Therefore, we will be interested in what your governemnt do and how they act with regards to drugs because ours will most likely follow suit a few months later. If only they both followed The Netherlands example and just legalised it; like they did in Amsterdam!I did however, laugh at ‘Pommy Cod Gobblers’, quite possibly the best anti-british insult I’ve heard in a while! :-)

          • I regret @madmatt6773 that your interpretation of this is wrong.

            Now, to prove it your satisfaction I believe I shall have to furnish you with copies of several FOI requests to the MHRA, GW Pharma patent applications, other GW documents and independent laboratory analyses of Sativex.

            Do you want to give me an email or how shall we go about this?

          • madmatt6773

            Straight from the horses mouth, GW Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer of Sativex;
            “Sativex® contains active ingredients called ‘cannabinoids’, which are
            extracted from cannabis plants grown and processed under strictly
            controlled conditions. It is composed primarily of a 1:1 ratio of two
            cannabinoids-CBD (cannabidiol-a non-psychoactive cannabinoid) and THC
            (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol)”

            “There is no evidence to suggest that Sativex® produces a ‘high’ comparable to recreational cannabis.One
            of the cannabinoids in Sativex is THC whereas the other principal
            cannabinoid is CBD, a non-psychoactive molecule. Evidence suggests that
            CBD may modulate many of the unwanted effects of THC. Hence, through the
            incorporation of CBD and the utilization of an oromucosal spray
            delivery system which is administered through careful self-titration
            (dose adjustment) and which keeps THC from entering the blood too
            rapidly, patients are able to obtain symptom relief without experiencing
            a ‘high’.”

            http://tinyurl.com/o5dg3ul

            Two cannabinoids, not the whole plants worth. Among the missing; Cannabigerols (CBG), Cannabichromenes (CBC), Cannabinol (CBN) and cannabinodiol (CBDL), other cannabinoids (such as cannabicyclol (CBL), cannabielsoin (CBE), cannabitriol (CBT) and other miscellaneous types).

            http://tinyurl.com/m3lr3jh

            Spraying it on a cigarette will only make the cigarette wet, it won’t get you high.

            And “yelling” with your cap lock on just makes you look like an idiot.

      • painkills2

        Sativex might be a product for patients who want a high-CBD strain of cannabis, but with a THC level of under 3%, the number of people who will be helped by this product will only be a small percentage of the medical cannabis patient population. Of course the percentage of people within that patient population who will be able to afford Sativex whittles down the market even further. Whether Sativex will have all the long-term health benefits found in medical marijuana remains to be seen. We won’t know that for many, many (many) years.

        It’s too bad that the first cannabis-type prescription medication is being delivered among a public that no longer trusts prescription drugs, big pharma or the FDA. My suggestion would be for big pharma to come begging on its hands and knees to the MMJ dispensaries and growers, work with them to patent the strains that will actually help people, and become partners instead of adversaries. Of course, it’s probably too late for that.

        • Sativex is a cannabis tincture with 51% THC

          • painkills2

            Sorry, what I meant to say was “a fixed dose of 2.7 mg THC and 2.5 mg CBD.”

          • Each spray contains those amounts of THC/CBD and 0.04g ethanol together with other cannabinoids, terpenes, flovonoids and other compounds present in the plants from which it is made: http://www.clear-uk.org/fascinating-facts-about-the-sativex-rip-off/

          • painkills2

            The point being that it’s strength is very weak for something that’s supposed to manage chronic pain in MS and cancer patients. And chronic pain patients would love to have healthy things in their medicines, but when it comes to relieving pain, I don’t think they’re going to care that much. Efficacy is of primary importance.

  • Sunil

    Adequate and Well-controlled studies of cannabis exist, but are ignored by marijuana schedules. Post with ~3500 Likes on HuffPo: http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/3071725

  • I have one suspicion though about why its not as effective as whole cannabis which would need someone with a good lab behind them, are the N tails damaged and is this why its not as effective due to echo 2 loss, echo 2 is were the N tail from cannabinoids pass through multiple membrane layers at the CBr and TRVp’s I believe this is broken and as such the THC losses its psychotropic effects but also its multi channel healing effects.

    • Shorty Hofmann

      I have watched the process is similar to making RIck Simpson oil. The difference is gw uses CO2 extraction system that produces pure RSO oil without any solvent residue to worry about. Now for some reason GW waters this pure medicine down with alcohol and call it Sativex. The cost is around $ 125:00 per bottle. This is pure cannabis Extract , don’t let anyone tell you different . I bet if someone sprayed that stuff into a cigarette and let it dry the alcohol out it would smoke just like a cannabis laced tobacco joint.

      • Correct.

        However, the amount of alcohol is tiny – 0.04g per spray. You would need to take 200 sprays to ingest one unit of alcohol.

      • Gerry

        who would want to mess up a good joint with tobacco.

        • Shorty Hofmann

          i’M JUST SAYING THE POSSIBILITY OF SMOKING SATIVEX. SOAK IT INTO A JOINT SAME RESULTS. THE QUESTION IS IS SATIVEX THE SAME AS CANNABIS. I THINK IT IS . WHAT DO YOU think ?? MAYBE READ WHAT I WROTE BEFORE YOU JUMP TO CONCLUSIONS ..

  • PhilDeBowl

    So?,don’t buy the crap.

    • It’s not crap. It’s an excellent product just vastly overpriced.

      • PhilDeBowl

        I stand corrected.

      • madmatt6773

        It’s not only crap it’s chemically altered crap. Among it’s listed ingredients is propylene glycol, which “has been shown to be linked to cancer, developmental/reproductive
        issues, allergies/immunotoxicity, neurotoxicity, endocrine disruption,
        and organ system toxicity.”

        http://tinyurl.com/k2hosba

        http://tinyurl.com/k74k6up

        Do you own stock in GW Pharmaceutical?

      • madmatt6773

        It’s not only crap it’s chemically altered crap. Among it’s listed ingredients is propylene glycol, which “has been shown to be linked to cancer, developmental/reproductive
        issues, allergies/immunotoxicity, neurotoxicity, endocrine disruption,
        and organ system toxicity.”

        http://tinyurl.com/k2hosba

        http://tinyurl.com/k74k6up

        Do you own stock in GW Pharmaceutical?

  • Thanks for the article. Sativex appears to be the feds answer to the medical marijuana issue.

    A recent resolution by the NADCP (National Assoc. of Drug Court Professionals) alludes to it specifically.
    “Whereas one such drug, Sativex, has been approved in several countries for cancer pain and multiple sclerosis spasticity and comprises two of marijuana’s active ingredients delivered as a mouth spray; and…”

  • Gerry

    Cannabis is NOT a drug it is however a medicinal herb. just like valariana officianialis , dandelion root, echinechia, or any other medicinal herb you can get at your local herbal shop. Cannabis should be properly labeled as such and sold in herbal shops , not taxed to death when it does become legal or labeled medicinal.

    • The medicalization of marijuana has led to the next step, the pharmaceuticaliztion of it. This year’s Hempfest theme reflects your position: Deschedule. This will allow for cannabis to be used as a natural, raw, medicinal herb.

      Rescheduling will allow a drug like Sativex, and only a drug like Sativex, to be prescribed (not recommended) and will be available in pharmacies (not dispensaries).

      The government’s attempts to force Sativex as a replacement to medical cannabis will make the effects of prohibition worse.

    • Noah

      How can you say it’s not a drug? Dandelion root DOES NOT artificially stimulate chemical release in your CNS. Marijuana DOES! That is what makes it a drug! You don’t develop tolerance with echinacea, you dont experience withdrawal with it either..and yet you DO with Cannabis. It is a drug..quit comparing it with a common herb!

      • Dumatz

        You sound like a scientist turned into an ambulance-chasing lawyer. Apples and Oranges -Marijuana is an herb, a beneficial herb like valerian or arrowroot. Herbs are definetly not common.

      • Freebird

        Many ‘drugs’ nowadays are actually synthesised forms of herbal or natural medicinal plants. Take willow for example; chewing on willow bark is a natural anasthetic as it contains the chemical we commonly call asprin. St Johns Wort is a better example, I use it to treat anxiety and depression naturally but it contains the active chemical or drug found in anti-depressant prescription drugs which yoyou must trial for at least 6weeks in the UK. I soke to my doctor about homeopathic.medicine and he said the only difference is that the tablets are a measured and concentrated form.of the drug found in ‘unknown or variable’ quantities in extracts of the herb ‘St Johns Wort’.. The herbal remedy itself warns about long term.use and states on my box at least that the active chemicals can cause dependancy. The chemical works the same by stopping the reuptate of seretonin thereby causing the body to produce more seretonin and thus affecting the users brain chemistry in the same.way setaraline or similar drugs do. Therefore, how is it one is a drug and the other a herbal remedy? I’d also like to point out that this is only one of many examples. Queen annes lace and blue cohosh were used in victorian times as abortificants and I believe that in the present day synthetics of chemicals which these herbs contain are used by the medical profession as drugs prior to a termination of pregnancy. Therefore, many herbs have medicinal uses, allbeit an extract of a particular chemical found within the herb. There are many many plants which can cause hallucinations, trips and other psychological and chemical reactions wihin the human body. The difference is government classification and the prevalence of abuse or use of such substances. Things become a drug when they have been clinically for effectiveness, this is why there are so many ‘legal highs’. Appologies for the long reply and spelling mistakes its 3am and i’m using a broken smartphone… :-)

  • Cat Fish

    it is good someone is mentioning sativex it could help so many suffering here,however it is specifically designed to cure M.S. spazticity the whole plant however can do so much more,and coincidentally the perfect food for the human body. im sure i am preaching to the choir ,so i wont eat up any more of your time on this but to say again ty for at least bringing this forward,but i think it may help the cause more,,if you expose what benefits,withdraw studies/cold turkey 14 year results 0 side effects,altho the patients symptoms of M.S. re-appear ,it is derived from the whole plant thc 9 before conversion by heat,iif you goto the sativex site it is all right there.keep up the good fight !!

  • Chris

    The Author lost me the moment he added “esters (what the heck is that anyway)”… If you don’t know then don’t speak on the subject to the extent you have without at least looking it up.. otherwise you lose all credibility.

  • You are Wrong

    If a person has a corn allergy, can they have high fructose corn syrup? NO they can NOT. Because high fructose corn syrup is still corn. Your argument is invalid.

  • klaus

    Congratulation for accurately dissecting this complex subject and landscape. Perhaps one additional aspect to be added: Colorado (the Aspen outlaws of the sixties ) has totally decriminalized cannabis and has done research what the average smoker will spend per year: 650 US Dollar.

    There might come a point when big business smells the roses and will saddle their horses. .

  • anonymus patient X

    We could almost find no patients using it in 3 years, who can answer the question ?

    I’ve heard it is a mixture between natural extracted and chemical reproduced ( = synthetic ) compounds. Untill today patients who had used it complain about burn feelings. spots. When i worked for doctors in 1993 i was witness of a previous version of bayers sativex. It was developed for treatment of the mouth and throat area. 2004 i was diagnosed myself and used another governmental approved medical cannabis application ( bedrocan )

    The past 3 years we have been looking, first in Europe, than global, for patients using these governmental approved medical cannabis applications ( and getting reimbursement for it as well ) We could did find a few, countable on one hand. No one gets reimbursement.

    If a medicine is not compensated, is should not be allowed to ‘develop’over such time period. Only the stocks went up 30 dollar in 2/3 months begin this year. Just due the phrase “for the treatment AND prevention of cancer in the patent. But thast does not proof it works, considering the amount of cannabis ‘in the 10 ml vial..

    About Sativex, which some already named scam-tivex the next info came recently from a canadian patient to treat and prevent cancer ( Yes. Without any financial reimbursement from healthcare );

    $751.40 Canadian Dollar.
    566 Euro.
    478 British Pound.
    544 usa Dollar.
    734,55 Australian Dollar.

    for 3 x 10 ml vials, Each vial containing;
    270 mg of THC and 250 mg of CBD.
    ———————————————–
    You have info ? contact me or send us your story,
    disregarded-by-my-government@live.nl
    Your personal information will not be stored and only used direct online and /or after you strict permission.

    • Keepitfriendly

      I use sativex. I live in Canada and I am reimbursed for it. It is easy to use and has the same effect on me that Marijuana does, namely it stops my pain and if I take too much it makes me high and increases my weight–through munching. I get the same burning effect under my tongue from the alcohol tincture I get from my local compassion club. I take it to combat the pain I have from nerve damage.

      I had smoked marijuana as a youth but gave it up for the more deadly, but legal alcohol when I started working as an adult. I have been taking the sativex for 5 years now and I take one spray twice a day. That is the equivilant to about two puffs twice a day. I know because I also get medical marijuana from the government.

      Although, I can’t say if the marijuana from the government is different in its effect than the stuff from the compassion club because I haven’t used that source. I have heard that the gov’t stuff is quite bad. I like using sativex because it is convienient, free and I can carry it on planes and work and use it without an odor–most important in my line of work–library..

      I too have looked into it and my understanding is that it is just an alcohol tincture. I am pretty sure it is not synthetic.

      • caitlin

        One of the side effects lised is nausea. Do you ever get nausea from it?

  • Investor

    I invested in GW Pharmaceuticals (the makers of Sativex) – their stock went public back in May. I was doing some research on cannabis oil benefits a few months ago and came across this YouTube video of GW Pharmaceuticals Cannabis Labs UK BBC Tour: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Un5JSkNX5oQ the stock has been doing very well since going public.

  • joe voll

    Whats going to happen to the REAL MEDICAL MARIJUANA in the 20 states that have it once Sativex gets approved? Whats going to happen to all those patients who want the real thing and want the homegrows?

  • Michelle

    Question, I just signed up for a clinical trial for Sativex … I do not want to go along with it if its going to hurt the chances of legalization of medical marijuana. I just received an email to sign up for this trial and now not so sure if I should go through with it. I am FOR decriminalization of marijuana and FOR legalization of medical marijuana …. any thought on this clinical trial would be awesome! Oh BTW, I live in US in state of FL where nothing has been legalized or decriminalized.

    Thanks in advance for any info you can provide.
    Michelle

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    • Kimmy1985

      Lol I will take some :)))

    • Kimmy1985

      Lol I will take some :)))

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