Cancer Patients Use Marijuana With Higher THC Levels, Study Finds


While the hemp plant boasts higher levels of CBD than THC, the case is opposite when it comes to marijuana. CBD, which has been shown to be effective in improving mood and sleep, sharpening cognitive abilities, and reducing pains, is safer than THC. THC, on the other hand, has psychoactive properties. However, this compound also has some medicinal benefits.

For instance, THC has a therapeutic effect stronger than CBD and it can also help with pain management. Now a new study shows how both cancer as well as non-cancer patients make use of cannabis. It has been found that those who have cancer prefer marijuana products with more THC content.

What Does This Research Reveal?

A new study, published in the Journal of Palliative Medicine, has found that in comparison to non-cancer patients, cancer patients are more likely to prefer forms of marijuana that have higher THC levels which gives relief from symptoms of cancer and the adverse side effects associated to cancer treatment such as chronic pain, nausea, and weight loss.

Study authors also concluded that non-cancer patients were more likely to prefer marijuana which has higher markers of CBD since cannabidiol has been shown to lower inflammation and reduce seizures. Moreover, cancer patients didn’t vape as much as they placed oil droplets under their tongue.

A researcher involved in this study, Arum Kim said, “Although there is growing patient interest in medical cannabis, there is a scarcity of solid evidence about the benefits, risks, and patterns of use of marijuana products in various disease settings.” She further mentioned how important it was to know more for providing the best care.

For the purpose of this research work, scientists looked at the data of 11,590 men and women based in New York. Of these 1,990 were cancer patients who bought and used cannabis products between 2016 and 2017. A distinct difference between the patterns of use of cannabis was found between patients of cancer and people who were patients of other diseases such as multiple sclerosis and epilepsy.

Both used opposite ratios of THC and CBD. Researchers found that over the course of these two years, all patients upped their THC usage by 0.20 milligrams each week. This study reveals the patterns of marijuana use among patients so that those who have questions can learn what can and cannot help them. Further research on the matter will also be carried out by the researchers of this study.

Key Takeaway

THC and CBD are two components of hemp and marijuana herbs. However, both have very different qualities. They are both used for a number of disease treatments according to their legal availability. Both cancer as well as non-cancer patients use cannabis.

However, their patterns of use are very different as revealed by a new study. Cancer patients use cannabis that is higher in THC while non-cancer patients prefer products with a higher quantity of cannabidiol.


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