Reviewed by Zalman S. Agus, MD; Emeritus Professor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.
LAUSANNE, SWITZERLAND, March 31-Even if you don't inhale, the active ingredient in marijuana can induce acute but short-term psychotic reactions, report researchers studying the effects of synthetic cannabis here.
After taking a medication containing 20 mg of Marinol (dronabinol), one subject in the study, a 22-year-old medical student and once-weekly pot smoker, "started to laugh a lot and after 90 minutes, he manifested a severe anxiety with symptoms of derealization and depersonalization." Nearly 6 hours later, the subject was still unable to complete a test consisting of road-sign recognition speed and accuracy.
The second subject, also a 22-year-old medical student and "weed" user (twice monthly), experienced delusional paranoia and severe anxiety within an hour of swallowing a 16.5 mg THC preparation.
The volunteer "became suspicious during the experiment. He thought the investigators were concealing some problems. He was unable to perform the psychometric tests…at the 1 hour and 2.5 hours post-ingestion series of tests. These effects persisted up to 4 hours after ingestion and weakened over the next 3 hours. The feeling was very unpleasant in comparison with that experienced after his usual smoking cannabis consumption," the investigators write.
The obvious conclusion I draw from this study is that marinol sucks. But unfortunately it is producing headlines such as these.