The Medical Minute: A Joint a Day for 20 Years Shows No Impact on Lung Health


by Bailey Rahn

If you’ve been wondering what’s happening in the world of cannabis research, we’ve got good news. Lots of good news.

New research surveying 20 years of data reiterated a conclusion replicated by several other studies: smoking cannabis does not appear to damage the lungs, even with long-term use. You veteran smokers are probably thinking, “Yeah. Duh. My lungs are basically military-grade titanium sacs.” But we’ll welcome the official report from Emory University scientists, anyway.

By measuring FEV1 (the capacity one is able to exhale) decline in U.S. adults, researchers discovered that marijuana use was not associated with worsened lung function. Whether the person was an 18-year-old cannabis newb or a champion joint smoker of 20 years, it doesn’t seem to make a huge difference according to the study results. While it’s good to know that cannabis smoking isn’t wreaking havoc in the lungs, many cannabis-only smokers still report some bronchitis symptoms with long-term use. Luckily in this glorious marijuana golden age, healthier vaporizer options are virtually endless.

If the sweet, sweet satisfaction of longitudinal research isn’t enough for you, read on. We’ve got more research from recent weeks to highlight in this week’s medical round-up:

  • A new study from the Australian National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre found that 13% of chronic pain patients used cannabis in conjunction with opiate medications, and of that group, one-third gave cannabis a 10/10 in regards to its efficacy.
  • Trials are now underway for a non-psychoactive CBD medication called Epidiolex, an anti-epileptic, plant-derived formula meant for children suffering from seizures. Dr. Paul Lyons of Winchester, VA is currently licensed to prescribe the medicine to volunteers, one of whom is nine-year-old Courtney who has been seizure-free for 23 days.
  • In reviewing data linking cannabis use to psychosis, researchers in New York discovered that this evidence failed to consider the co-occurrence of other drugs, namely alcohol. Initial attempts to adjust the data weakened the relationship between psychosis and marijuana, but the researchers call for better designed studies that consider use of other substances.
  • Activation of CB2 cannabinoid receptors resulted in improved skeletal muscle recovery, according to a recent study out of Shenyang, China.
    Researchers in Italy found that a combination of cannabinoids CBD and THC-V reduced fat build-up in the livers of animal subjects.
    Stay tuned for more cannabis study updates in the next Medical Minute!

VIA Leafly


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