Cancer is one of the leading causes of death in Australia. In 2019, there were about 145,000 people diagnosed with cancer and about 50,000 deaths from this terrible disease. It’s expected that there will be around 150,000 cases of cancer by 2020. One in two Australians is going to develop some type of cancer by the age of 85. While the statistics are quite depressing, the good news is that survival rates tend to increase.
It’s very likely that you know someone suffering from cancer. There are more than a hundred forms of cancer today, including breast cancer, lung cancer, prostate cancer, and colorectal cancer. While most of these diagnoses are adults over 50, cancer can affect anyone regardless of age.
When it comes to the treatment, it includes radiation and chemotherapy in most cases. However, the administration of these therapies often leads to side effects and unpleasant symptoms. Medical marijuana therapy can reduce these symptoms and help in managing cancer. It is perfect for patients looking for a safe, alternative treatment option.
Medical cannabis is proven to slow down tumor growth on the lungs, brain, and breasts. Additionally, it can prevent cancer cells from spreading and reaching distant tissues. The secret of success lies in cannabinoids (THC and CBD), chemical compounds acting on cell receptors both in the peripheral nervous system and central nervous system.
Cannabinoids play an important role in breast cancer therapy by decreasing high Id1 levels. Id1 is a protein that promotes metastasis and growth of breast cancer cells. In addition to breast cancer, high values of this protein are also typical for bladder cancer and prostate cancer. Treatments that involve medical marijuana can regulate Id-1 levels and make the cancer cells less invasive, and consequently slow cancer cell growth.
Many cancer patients found medical cannabis helped them cope with their disease and symptoms. Cannabis can do a decent job of managing symptoms like loss of appetite, pain, vomiting, and nausea. Moreover, it can relieve the side effects of chemotherapy and medications used for cancer.
A number of clinical trials and studies showed that cannabis can relieve long-term, chronic pain in some cancer patients. When smoked consistently over a prolonged period of time, cannabis can reduce the intensity of neuropathic pain. Smoked marijuana also works in conjunction with analgesics thanks to its analgesic properties.
Research shows that medical cannabis can help manage vomiting and nausea – the common side effects of radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Cannabinoids can relieve these symptoms by affecting down-regulated chemoreceptors. If antinausea medications don’t work, synthetic cannabinoids can be used to reduce the severity and frequency of emetic events.
People with cancer often experience a loss of appetite. This leads to cachexia and anorexia or weight loss. Cannabinoids can reduce these symptoms and promote appetite at the same time. Many people with cancer find that medical marijuana increased their appetite and helped them deal with emetic symptoms.