2005N-0479 International Drug Scheduling; Convention on Psychotropic Substances; Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs; Butorphanol; Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Dronabinol); Gamma-Hydroxybutyric Acid; Ketamine;
FDA Comment Number : EC5
Submitter : Mr. Gregory A. H. Webber Date & Time: 12/19/2005 01:12:26
Organization : Mr. Gregory A. H. Webber
Category : Individual Consumer
Issue Areas/Comments
Using Marinol, I have found it to be far less reliable than natural Cannabis. Marinol's absorption rate depends upon what has been eaten within 2 hours before taking it, so it can take anywhere from 2 to 6 hours to take effect. I never know whether I will just have my nausea relieved, or if I will be high. If I find I am high, sometimes I can't drive, and have missed things I wanted to do. Once I have taken Marinol, I have no control over how high I may get; that is scary. With Cannabis, I can take one hit, another if I need to, and a third, and so on, stopping when I get relief; I can control my dosing and timing, getting relief from nausea within 15 minutes. Cannabis wears off in a predictable manner, and I can redose as needed.

There is no abuse potential for Marinol. Taking larger amounts of it does not make one higher, just more sleepy. After mentioning my pain prescriptions, I have subsequently been approached by people who illegally wanted to buy my pain medications (Hydrocodone, Oxycodone, and Oxycontin, for hip replacement surgeries). I have not once mentioned to someone I took Marinol and then had them ask to buy some. Even for recreational pot users, Marinol has zero appeal. I only take it when I run out of the real stuff, to help tide me over, and get through another day of nausea (from anti-HIV meds). It should only be Schedule IV, as should marijuana itself. Cannabinoids are NOT "narcotics" in the same sense as opioids; they deserve their own category and considerations, including a realistic understanding of their usefulness to modern medicine, as well as their relatively little harm-causing ability. I am glad for the availability of Marinol, but I would rather have Cannabis itself, or a whole Cannabis extract.