No November 2010 Arizona passed Proposition 203, which legalized medical marijuana. “Marijuana” means all parts of any plant of the genus cannabis whether growing or not, and the seeds of such plant. “Medical use” means the acquisition, possession, cultivation, manufacture, use, administration, delivery, transfer or transportation of marijuana or paraphernalia relating to the administration of marijuana to treat or alleviate a registered qualifying patient’s debilitating medical condition or symptoms associated with the patient’s debilitating medical condition. People of all ages and backgrounds, including the elderly, are using medical marijuana to relieve pain. Since marijuana was legalized for medicinal use, more than 22,200 people have received permission to smoke, eat or otherwise ingest it to ease their ailments. People ages 31 to 50 make up the largest group of patients using the drug to counter illness, representing 40 percent of all medical-marijuana users. Those 51 to 81 account for more than 35 percent of patients, while 18- to 30-year-olds make up about 25 percent. People younger than 18 represent less than 1 percent. The overwhelming majority of medical-pot users reported chronic pain as their medical condition, while muscle spasms were also high on the list, health officials reported. Other ailments include hepatitis C, cancer and seizures. Will Humble, director of the state’s Department of Health Services, said the data indicate the state has avoided becoming a “largely recreational program as opposed to medical.”
“Debilitating medical condition” means one or more of the following:
(a) Cancer, glaucoma, positive status for human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, hepatitis C, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, crohn’s disease, agitation of alzheimer’s disease or the treatment of these conditions.
(b) A chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or its treatment that produces one or more of the following: cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe and chronic pain; severe nausea; seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy; or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis.
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