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Marijuana as Medicine

             In 1937, Congress passed the Marijuana Tax Act, which prohibited the non-medical use of marijuana by requiring anyone who produced, distributed, or used the drug for medical purposes to register and pay a tax. Individuals found in violation faced charges of tax evasion. In 1942, the United States Pharmacopeia removed marijuana from the text because it was believed, not proven, to be a harmful and addictive drug. In 1969, the Dangerous Substances Act listed marijuana as a class I substance, the most restrictive classification. Further research is needed, but it is difficult to research a substance's effects without using the substance. Additional studies and research applications have been approved through the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has yet to determine if they will provide the marijuana needed for additional studies. NIDA tells both parents and teenagers that more research needs to be done . Many studies and evidence show that marijuana, when used for medicinal purposes under a physician's care, does provide more benefits than hazards.
             Ongoing research changes medical opinions regularly, and the time required to establish new data can be many years. The study of marijuana is no different. According to the NIDA, a National Institute of Health (NIH) panel concluded that studies regarding medicinal use of marijuana remain inconclusive. A report released in August 1997 stated that future studies should consider the effects of smoked marijuana as opposed to the capsule form delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), also known as Marinol or dronabinol . According to scientists, more research needs to be done on marijuana's side effects and potential benefits before it can be recommended for medical use. The FDA must approve a drug before it can be dispensed through a prescription.
             The smoke from marijuana contains the same carcinogens as tobacco smoke.

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