THC as medicine



The technical term “cannabinoids” refers to the active substances that are responsible for the therapeutic effect of cannabis. According to our state of knowledge, no other plant on the planet contains these substances. The 100% vegetable-based cannabinoids are called “phytocannabinoids” to differentiate them from synthetic compounds. The best known phytocannabinoid is probably “delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol”, in short: THC. “Cannabidiol” (CBD) has also become the focus in public perception over the last few years. The biological effect of cannabis is mainly attributed to these two phytocannabinoids.


Of all cannabinoids, THC is probably the most well-known. Many of the therapeutic effects of cannabis are directly attributed to THC: They include the reduction of stress and nervousness as well as the lessening of nausea and the alleviation of pain and muscle cramps. THC is also administered to improve sleep quality of patients and to stimulate their appetite.

Tetrahydrocannabinol –
structural formula

The symptom-reducing effect of cannabinoids has also been proven for multiple sclerosis, intestinal diseases and epilepsy as well as other ailments.

Fields of application

Medicinal cannabis is not a cure. This means that, according to the state of the art, cannabis cannot remedy or cure diseases or disorders. However, for a wide range of different diseases, the administration of medicinal cannabis may lead to a considerable relief of symptoms – and also hinder the trajectory of the disease. Since the 1970s, double-blind studies in relation to cannabinoids were conducted time and again. Based on the data gained, it can be stated that the active substances do a particularly good job in the treatment of chronic pain. This is mainly true for pain in the context of the nervous system, e.g. pain due to injuries to the nerves. The symptom-reducing effect of cannabinoids has also been proven for multiple sclerosis, intestinal diseases and epilepsy as well as other ailments.


How are medicinal cannabinoids administered to get in the patient’s body? This is probably the most frequently asked question related to medicinal THC/cannabis. Inhalation, e.g. by evaporation, is often chosen. This type of intake has several advantages: The greatest advantage is that, this way, the cannabinoids are quickly detected in the body and can unfold their impact. If a medical device is used to evaporate the cannabis, toxic compounds, including carbon monoxide or ammonia, are reduced in comparison to smoking. Furthermore, evaporation allows for consistent THC administration, resulting in a higher therapeutic concentration.
Since not all patients can inhale, oral intake has also been established, e.g. in the form of oil. This is the most common form of administration in patients who are self-medicating. Another widespread form of oral intake of cannabinoids is in tea or in foods. Patience and a slow rise in dosage are important for the therapy.
Increasing the dosage slowly and being patient have proven to be important factors for minimising any side effects on the part of the preparations.


In addition to the type of intake, the second most-frequent question concerns the “correct” amount of cannabis to intake. Unfortunately, no generally valid statements can be made in this regard, since the effective dosage varies from person to person. In general, a minimal-dosage approach is normal when administrating medicinal cannabis/THC. Subsequently, the administered amount is increased slowly and continuously to find the exact dose that is appropriate for the patient.

Kognitive Wirkung

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