How Dronabinol Works and Pediatric and Off-Label Indications

How Does Dronabinol Work?

Dronabinol is a synthetic version of delta-9-THC, a naturally occurring cannabinoid. Delta-9-THC is the main psychoactive component in Cannabis sativa L. (marijuana). Cannabinoid receptors are found in the central nervous system. While it is unknown exactly how dronabinol works, it is thought to produce its effects by binding to these cannabinoid receptors.

Can Children Use It?

Dronabinol is not approved for appetite stimulation in people younger than 18 years of age with AIDS, as it has not been adequately studied in this age group. Dronabinol can be used for nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy in children. However, it should be used with caution because of its side effects.

Off-Label Dronabinol Uses

On occasion, your healthcare provider may recommend this product for something other than the conditions discussed in this article. This is called an "off-label" use. Some off-label uses for this medication may include:
  • Cancer-related loss of appetite
  • Muscular spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis
  • Postoperative nausea and vomiting
  • Cancer-related nausea and vomiting
  • Treatment of marijuana abuse or dependence.
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Dronabinol Drug Information

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