Medicinal cannabis is a plant-based medicine. This plant produces several useful chemicals which are termed cannabinoids. Two main active cannabinoids are – Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). They can be taken orally or inhaled. Medicinal cannabis is available in the form of a pill, oil, nasal spray, or oral spray.
CBD has anti-inflammatory properties while THC leads to euphoria and sedation.
CBD can inhibit the receptor that metabolizes many common drugs, like methadone, statins, antidepressants, and opioids, leading to higher levels of those drugs in the bloodstream. Hence it becomes of utmost importance to be open and honest when it comes to confronting in front of the doctor.
During the long journey of cancer and its treatment, the patient experienced several moderate to severe symptoms. Medicinal cannabis is considered last when the symptoms don’t get resolved with any of the medicines. Symptoms for which medicinal cannabis is effective –
- Nausea and vomiting
- Decrease or increase in appetite
First, the doctor tries all effective medicines to cure symptoms. And after seeing they are ineffective in treating symptoms, the doctor may prescribe cannabis.
There are some research studies that reveal that cannabis can help to relieve side effects from cancer or cancer treatment. Although there are some studies that show that medicinal cannabis is not helpful. However, no studies say that medicinal cannabis cures cancer.
Side effects of cannabis
Medicinal cannabis shows some side effects. These side effects vary from person to person and product to product. Common side effects include
- Fatigue and drowsiness
- Dizziness and problems with balance
- Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea
- Dry mouth
- Appetite increase or decrease
- Problems with thinking and memory
- The feeling of euphoria and depression
- Hallucinations or paranoid delusions
Medicinal cannabis is not recommended to patients who are pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning to get pregnant.
If you are taking medicinal cannabis, make sure
- You don’t drive
- You don’t operate heavy machinery
- If you are traveling internationally, check for its legality in that country since many countries have disapproved its use.
(Disclaimer: The content on this site is for informational purposes only, and should not be taken as professional medical advice. Always seek the guidance of your doctor or other health professionals for any questions you may have regarding your health or a medical condition.)