Marijuana Vs Marinol

Medicinal marijuana is known as Marinol. Some would say that Marijuana is safer and more a more “natural” way to get the health benefits of Marijuana for cancer and aids patients. It is no secret that marijuana is illegal. A doctor can legally prescribe Marinol.

Some of the illnesses that are treated by Marinol include AIDS, and cancer patients that are being treated with chemotherapy. It can relieve pain, nausea, vomiting as well as increase appetite and aid with weight gain. There are some claims it can treat glaucoma and multiple sclerosis.

Marinol and marijuana may not be able to be taken by some patients who are taking medications that affect the central nervous system like sleep aids, tranquilizers, or anti-psychotic medications. Some of the health issues that will prevent the use of Marinol or marijuana include the following:

  • Seizure disorders
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Mental Illness

Some of the differences between Marijuana and Marinol are listed below.


Marijuana is illegal to own because it is a controlled substance. Marijuana has many carcinogens. Smoking marijuana causes second hand smoke exposure to those who are not medically cleared to use marijuana. Health issues associated with smoking may outweigh the benefits. May affect asthma and other lung/breathing health issues. May lead to the introduction of opportunist fungus and bacteria. Contains an inconsistent mixture of 400 chemicals from cannabis plants. Smoking can reduce oxygen to an unborn child. Relief within minutes when smoked. Not covered by insurance. Though illegal to cultivate, it can be grown at home.

MARINOL (Dronabinol)

A doctor can prescribe Marinol legally. Just the beneficial ingredient, THC, is removed and used. Contains a stable and predictable dose of THC. Synthetically made and ingested orally. Formulated in sesame seed oil. There is a low risk of dependency. Relief occurs about an hour after Marinol is administered. Pills may be ejected with vomiting before it has a chance to work. May be paid for by insurance. Cannot be made at home.


Both marijuana and Marinol can impair judgment, affect mental health, interfere with focus, and diminish memory. It is recommended that the user of either doesn’t drive. There is the risk of psychological addiction. Some studies suggest there is a physical withdraw symptoms when consistent use has stopped. Psychosis is not caused by marijuana and Marinol use, but it can trigger psychotic symptoms like hallucinations, hearing voices, and psychosis. Should be kept in a secure place to prevent ingestion by others. May affect an unborn or nursing child. Cannot be used with children. Older adults may have more side affects than younger patients.

The future of Marijuana and Marinol being used medicinally looks promising. Some studies are looking into the following:

  • Alzheimer’s disease - may prevent deposits on the brain
  • Neuron growth - may promote growth
  • Lung cancer - possibly slows/stops spread of cancer
  • Breast cancer - possibly slows/stops spread of cancer
  • HIV/AIDS - mood improvement, weight increase, pain relief
  • Brain cancer - may kill cancer cells

When choosing between using marijuana or Marinol, the first thing to find out what the law says about the use. Discuss it with your doctor to see what is going to work best for your specific situation within the guidelines of the law. When marijuana VS Marinol, often Marinol wins because of the legality and because insurance may cover the costs.


Find out more about Marinol.