Does marijuana cure cancer?

I am sure that many of you have heard about the news where marijuana are being used for curing cancer. This new is so famous that it also reached my home country, Thailand where they discussed about potential legalization. This made me curious about the details to know whether this myth is true and i did some research on it to find out.

First off, for those who do not know, what is marijuana?

LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 19: Dave Warden, a bud tender at Private Organic Therapy (P.O.T.), a non-profit co-operative medical marijuana dispensary, displays various types of marijuana available to patients on October 19, 2009 in Los Angeles, California. Attorney General Eric Holder announced new guidelines today for federal prosecutors in states where the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes is allowed under state law. Federal prosecutors will no longer trump the state with raids on the southern California dispensaries as they had been doing, but Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley recently began a crackdown campaign that will include raids against the facilities. Cooley maintains that virtually all marijuana dispensaries are in violation of the law because they profit from their product. The city of LA has been slow to come to agreement on how to regulate its 800 to 1,000 dispensaries. Californians voted to allow sick people with referrals from doctors to consume cannabis with the passage of state ballot Proposition 215 in 1996 and a total of 14 states now allow the medicinal use of marijuana. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)

Marijuana is a cannabis plant that contains tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which causes the user to be “high”. While under this “high” effect, marijuana users have reported that their pain and nausea are relieved and that it reduces inflammation. Some users feel that it helps with depression but it can ¬†also causes anxiety and paranoia in others.

Marijuana has different type of strains, which have different effects. Some strains causes body “high” while other causes head “high”. There are two known means of taking marijuana; one is by mouth and other is by lungs.

According to cancer.org, when taking it by mouth, the THC is slowly absorbed and take hours before we can start to feel the “high”. However, the effect of taking by mouth would be stronger than by lungs. When taking it by lungs, the THC would be absorbed very fast and causes the marijuana to run through into our bloodstream to reaching our brain. This means that we get high much faster than by mouth but the effect also last less. Further scientific explanation can be found here, on the marijuana section.

So how can marijuana cure cancer?

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From the articles i read, it seems that marijuana was not fully proved yet that it can “cure” cancer but it acts more as a reliever for cancer-related symptoms.

According to Jeremy Kossen from Leafly.com, a website specializing in marijuana, the cannabis was an effective medicine for relieving many cancer and treatment side-effects such as nausea, vomiting, loss of appetites, anxiety, insomnia, pain and even depression.  This means that cannabis is indeed useful for cancer therapy and treatment but it cannot be used alone in curing cancer.

In addition, Kossen also stated that many scientific studies were conducted on and find out that there are potential positive results because cannabis has been shown to stop the growth of cancers. Further details can be viewed on this link, on the “cannabis cancer research shows promise, but we need to do more” section. Moreover, in this same article, they also stated that one study conducted by Madrid’s Complutense University has found that injecting synthetic THC in rats can destroy brain tumors and also extending life.

Many of these researches has causes the National cancer institute to acknowledge that cannabis does kill cancer cells in pre-clinical studies. The issues are that it is still difficult to get permission to do clinical studies with marijuana for ethical issues because marijuana is not yet allowed for any medical purpose as it is still considered as a schedule 1 drug. Therefore, they concluded that further clinical studies needs to be done before fully acknowledging cannabis as a cure for cancer. However, it would now be safe to say that it is a cancer symptoms and cancer treatment side-effects reliever. I would then say that we cannot really decide yet whether or not to accept the null hypothesis.

 

 

By Dhaam Sakuntabhai

Sources:

https://www.leafly.com/news/health/can-cannabis-cure-cancer/

https://www.leafly.com/news/science-tech/government-run-cancer-institute-quietly-acknowledges-that-cannabi

http://www.cancer.org/treatment/treatmentsandsideeffects/physicalsideeffects/chemotherapyeffects/marijuana-and-cancer

http://thefreethoughtproject.com/main-stream-media-finally-admits-cannabis-potential-cure-cancer/

 

3 thoughts on “Does marijuana cure cancer?

  1. Mackenzie French

    I’m not sure if i would say marijuana cures cancer but I do believe it cures the patient going through cancer. I say this because one of my best guy friends had cancer last year and went through the all the chemo treatments and all that bad stuff. He lost his appetites, he felt sick all the time, and felt like he was dying. Once he started eating edibles, he said he began to feel better. It helped ease his pain and he would get more of an appetite. I think marijuana should be legalized for medical illnesses such as cancer, because knowing that it helped my friend, I would want it to help others too. Your research was also very interesting to me, since my friend actually had brain cancer. I would like to see more research and experiments done on this issue!

  2. Cristen Heaton

    During this blogging period, I also did a post on marijuana but more so relating to the different things in it! So I really enjoyed this post from a different side. I really like the overall structure of your blog post, but you mentioned in it about the studies and then you didn’t go into that any further. I think that would’ve have been super helpful if you would’ve elaborated on the studies to scientifically back up your blog post. I also think it is wild that marijuana can actually help people with cancer with the side effects. I think if something like marijuana can help then why not let cancer patients do it? At the end of the day, it’s all about what’s helping them. I think the problem with marijuana is the bad stigma that comes with it. I actually found a study that you could use to back up your overall idea, http://www.freemygreen.com/bbs/topic/2234-cancer-chemotherapy/. Feel free to use it or just simply view it!

  3. Michael David Kresovich

    Great post. Very relevant especially in todays age, as yousaid it reached your own country. I think the Marijuana question is very tricky because it has both negative and postive effects assoicated with it. Your artlicle made me relaixe some things, first is that it can actually help cancer. Cancer is a dreadful thing, I have known many close people pass away from the terrible disease. We need to do something to stop this , and with marjiuana helping , it mightbe a step!

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