OTTAWA -- Physicians who approve the use of medicinal marijuana say their clinical knowledge of the drug is hazy and they rely heavily on their patients to help them craft treatment plans, according to interviews conducted for Health Canada.
The doctors' knowledge of medical marijuana "had most often come directly (in anecdotal form) from their patients' experience with the drug," concludes the study of physician attitudes by Montreal firm Les Etudes de Marche Createc.
"This model obscures the boundary between physician and patient and contravenes conventional medical practice which relies almost exclusively on scientific evidence-based information," the study says.
"Many physicians expressed concern about this blurring of boundary."
The study, from March to June 2007, drew from a pool of 917 doctors across the country. The group was then narrowed to 30.
Overall, the group did not view marijuana as a "high risk" drug and agreed that the positive effects for medical purposes outweighed its negative effects.
But doctors still felt they needed to know much more about marijuana.
Health Canada has authorized its use for severe pain, nausea and muscle spasms among those with multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries, arthritis, cancer and HIV/AIDS, and for seizures from epilepsy.
this from wwwedmontonsun.com