Frequently Asked Questions

Your questions, answered

Get a feel for how your journey might look, or reach out to us if you’re unclear about anything at all.

General Questions

Provided you have not signed an agreement with your pharmacy then no, you will have a repeat prescription that is issued by y our consultant and you may cancel this at any time.

Your initial medication may take up to 2 weeks, thereafter a pharmacy with high service levels should be significantly quicker.

This will depend on the pharmacy you choose, in most instances UK pharmacies will not deliver directly to Europe. If this is a requirement, please ensure you mention this in your assessment.

If the syringe is separate to your medication then yes.

No person’s endocannabinoid tone is the same so initially you will need to test this to find the right time for you. A good g uide is 60 to 120 minutes prior to sleep.

Medical oil products are designed for ingestion and contain no effective carriers to penetrate the skin so will have little effect.

You should speak with your Consultant or Doctor prior to taking multiple medications at the same time.

This will depend entirely on your condition and treatment plan, you should speak with your consultant or Doctor prior to making a decision.

This is dependant on your prescription, but most products are designed to last 1 to 2 months (30ml/50ml).

This varies considerably across product and type of medication. Your Consultant will discuss with you once your treatment plan is decided.

It is likely your initial prescriptions will be very low in THC and high in CBD therefore it is unlikely you will experience the feeling of being high, (also known as psychotropic). THC is the active ingredient that gives you this feeling. The start low, go slow method of administration will reveal the amount of THC that is right for your endocannabinoid tone.

As with most medications you should not consume alcohol whilst on medication.

Work, Driving & Holidays

Your repeat prescription can be written without a face to face visit and if you nominate distance selling pharmacy for your medication they will deliver to your door.

If your employer tests employees for drugs like THC then it is possible that you will be positive for a THC test on a prescribed or recreational product. You can test positive even if you are not impaired as THC is detected for some days after you have taken it. It is best practice to tell your employer that you are on medicinal cannabis and talk to them about the situation. Your doctor may also be able to help and ex plain matters.

Some professions will not allow any detectable THC even if you are not impaired –such as pilots, railway signaller etc. CBD is not intoxicating and should not cause problems on testing but be aware that some CBD prescriptions and over-the-counter CBD can have a little THC which, whilst being a very low and non-intoxicating dose, can cause positive urine or saliva or hair test results. Be honest and discuss with your employer and if need be, get support from your doctor or Union.

Cannabis is highly regulated across the world so in many cases it may not be legal to possess in some countries, even with a doctor’s prescription. When travelling you should fully investigate the rules specific to each country to ensure there are no restrictions about what you can possess whilst travelling to and from. Here is a useful link to help you navigate travelling with cannabis: www.gov.uk/travelling-controlled-drugs. Discuss with your doctor or travel medicine specialist about any medicines or medical devices you are taking with you. This includes over-the-counter CBD and other medications.

Once you have established clearance to take your medication you must always carry a letter from your doctor detailing any prescription medicines you are taking with you. The letter should include your name, what countries you’re going to and when, a list of your medicines, including how much you have, doses and the strength, and the signature of the person who prescribed your medicines. Take your medicines in the original packaging so they can be easily identified and make sure you declare these items. If you are travelling via air with medical cannabis oil, your product may leak due to normal changes in air pressure. To prevent leakage, keep your medicine in the main cabin, stored upright, and with the lid securely tightened.

No one should drive whilst impaired and THC can cause impairment for driving whilst the intoxicating effect is still present so please check the law prior to driving https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/drug-driving.

Smoking vs Vaporising

Using a quality vaporizer, you will typically use 0.1 or 0.25 grams and receive 10 – 25 inhalations from each full oven. For some people this will be enough for a full day of effect. Others will load the oven many times a day and possibly with different cultivars for different effects.

When smoking cannabis, typically around 0.5 grams of cannabis is used for between 2 to 4 hours of effect. Furthermore, by smoking, more than 50% of cannabinoids will be destroyed or will have dissipated into the air due to the absorption rate of your lungs, the temperature and combustion while not inhaling. In addition, you will absorb higher levels of carcinogens, tars and burnt plant material.

Your prescription will be designed for vaping as smoking cannabis in the UK is illegal. The reason some people may experience a difference in effect between smoking and vaping is because smoking involves burning cannabis at very high temperatures, causing large amounts of cannabinoids to be released in a very short amount of time. In a vaporizer, because it doesn’t combust plant material, you get fewer cannabinoids at the same time, but more cannabinoids in total over a longer period of time than smoking.

In the first instance contact us at [email protected] add we will ensure you are dosing correctly. Alternatively log into your patient portal and book an appointment with your prescriber to discuss your options.

Consuming & Dosing

There are many ways to take medical cannabis. Oils can be taken under-the-tongue, or there are capsules, topical creams or dried flower for vaping. Smoking is not allowed. Most prescriptions are for oil and dried flower. Your doctor will discuss the best way to con sume medical cannabis for your symptoms.

Your doctor will advise on the dose. Generally, you will be started on a low dose – say about 10mgs of CBD and build up slowly to the average dose of CBD of 60-100mgs daily (usually in 2/3 divided doses). If the doctor wants to add in THC then again it starts low (even as low as 1mg THC) and builds up slowly. It is unusual for people to need more than 150 mgs CBD or 20mgs THC daily in oil form or 1-2grams per day in dried flower form (for vaping).

It depends on what form you take it in. Vaping will mean a quicker effect (in minutes) and last about 2 to three hours or so. Taking an oil will take longer to have an effect (maybe 60-120 minutes) but lasts longer (maybe 6 hours or so). Everyone is very variable, but this is an average.

Yes, this can often be arranged by speaking to the service where an individual is living. However, although it’s all legal, some local regulations by care agencies or residential homes may prevent those services from giving the medicine. If you are having difficulties, please consider speaking to your prescribing doctor who may be able to provide support.

Vaping is usually for “breakthrough” pain when a quick result is needed, as vaping effects come on quickly (in minutes) but last only about 2 to 3 hours. Oil provides better background relief all day long when taken 2 to 3 times daily. Your doctor will advise what is best for you.

Cost of Medical Cannabis

At present we are not aware of any health insurance companies that cover medical cannabis treatments. In some circumstances they will cover an initial consultation so refer to your insurer for this.

Medical cannabis is not yet covered by the NHS therefore you will pay directly for your medication on a Monthly basis. At Wellford we offer various payment plans that may help you budget for this expense, speak to your consultant for more details. The cost of medical cannabis varies and is dependant on the product prescribed, your consultant will be able to advise you during your initial assessment. We have up to date product costs that we can supply you upon request. You may also pay the cost of repeat prescriptions which will be around £35 to £25 per prescription.

Prices vary depending on the products and we constantly monitor these through our distance selling pharmacy Therismos Dirx. Your consultant will advise the best possible product for you whilst considering the prices.

Side Effects & Reactions

Unless stated otherwise on your medication store at room temperature but always ensure it is safely out of reach of children or pets. Do not store in a refrigerator, in direct sunlight, or exposed to extreme temperatures. Store in a upright position with the lid securely tightened to avoid leakage.

Any unused or leftover medicine should be disposed of. Patients can dispose of any unwanted medicines including CBPM’s at your local NHS community pharmacy.

Storage & Disposing

Like all medicines, medical cannabis products can have unwanted effects. You are most likely to experience them when you start your treatment. Most are mild and wear off within a few hours and over time as you become used to the medicine. The extent of side effects can vary with the type of medical cannabis product and between individuals. Please refer to the patient product information leaflet for a list of common side effects.

As with most medicinal products there is risk of adverse reactions, below are some of the adverse reactions to be aware of:

Disorientation
Dizziness
Euphoria
Confusion
Drowsiness
Dry mouth
Allergic reaction
Irritation or rash
Somnolence (drowsiness or sleepiness)
Balance problems
Hallucination
Nausea
Paranoia
Asthenia
Fatigue
Anxiety
Vomiting
Diarrhoea
Depression
Psychosis

Monitor how you are feeling and speak to your consultant or Doctor if you have any concerns.

Medical cannabis oils are generally free from added preservatives and colours, flavours, sweeteners, animal products, lactose, gluten, and wheat. Medical cannabis oil should not be used if you are allergic to cannabis or medium-chain triglyceride (MCT – Oil derived from coconut or palm kernels). If you experience any allergic reaction symptoms including irritation or a rash you should contact your doctor immediately.

Medicinal cannabis may not be safe to consume alongside other medication so please inform your GP and specialist prescriber of all medicines you are currently taking to ensure it is safe for you.

If you experience any side effects, talk to your doctor or pharmacist. This includes any possible side effects not listed in the product information leaflet. You can also report side effects directly via the Yellow Card Scheme (www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard). By reporting side effects, you can help provide more information on the safety of this medicine.

Inevitably this may occur and it is best advice to wait until the next dose is due. It is important you do not take a double dose to make up for the dose that you missed as this may increase the risk of an unwanted side effect. If you have any concerns regarding missed doses talk to your doctor about the correct dose to take.

Medical Cannabis & The Law

You are not legally allowed to do this. Medicinal cannabis has to be grown in regulated GMP conditions (Good manufacturing Practice) to ensure high quality, consistent and that they are free from any contaminants. Only GMP products can be prescribed in the UK.

It is, of course, possible to be stopped in possession of cannabis. You will need to show that you have been legally prescribed the product. It’s a good idea to carry your prescription with you. If you have over-the-counter CBD then it should be sufficient to say that it is a legal product, but keep the container with you.