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Cannabis VS Lung Cancer

Cannabis VS Lung Cancer

Does Cannabis Help Treat Cancer? This is a question that has been hotly debated for decades. Cannabis proponents, on the one hand, claim it does, while others claim there is no medical evidence to suggest otherwise. However, a recent article in the October 2021 issue of the British Medical Journal (BMJ) discusses the curious case of a patient who refused conventional treatment for lung cancer and opted to self-administer cannabidiol.

Lung Cancer in Numbers

Lung cancer is the third most common cancer in France and current conventional treatments include surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, immunotherapy and targeted cancer drugs.

Despite advances in cancer treatment, lung cancer survival rates remain low, around 17% at 5 years after diagnosis. The average lifespan of a person who refuses treatment after diagnosis is 7.5 months.

A Patient Using CBD:THC Cannabis Oil

The patient featured in the BMJ study was an octogenarian who had visited the doctor for a persistent cough and, after tests including a CT scan, was diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer. The patient suffered from mild chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and was a current smoker who had smoked a pack of cigarettes daily for 68 years.

After extensive discussions with her clinicians, during which she was informed of all possible outcomes, the patient refused radiation therapy on the grounds that she had seen her late husband suffer the side effects, and she also refused lobectomy. . The doctors decided to place the patient under observation, which is called "watch and wait".

Unbeknownst to her doctors, she decided to take CBD:THC oil two to three times a day. Her doctors continued to monitor her with regular CT scans and for two and a half years they observed that the lung cancer was gradually shrinking from an initial size of 41mm in June 2018 to 10mm in February. 2021. An overall reduction of 76% in maximum axial diameter, which averaged 2.4% per month over the 2.5-year period.

Her case was referred to the local Multidisciplinary Team (PCT) in February 2019, when doctors were surprised to see the reduction in tumor size given that she had refused conventional treatment. It was then that the lady admitted to taking 0.5ml of CBD oil orally consistently 2-3 times a day at the suggestion of a family member. The supplier of the unauthorized treatment informed the clinical team that the main ingredients were 19.5% THC, 20.05% CBD and 23.8% THCA.

The provider also revealed that he advised the patient not to take her medication with hot food or drink as she might feel "high". The patient reported to doctors that she had less appetite since taking the CBD oil. She said there were no other changes to her diet or lifestyle, including refusing to quit smoking tobacco altogether, instead reducing her consumption to one pack a week.

The report states:

We are aware of the limitations of this case report. We are unable to confirm the complete components of the CBD oil the patient was taking or provide information on which component(s) may have contributed to the observed tumor regression. Although there appears to be an association between taking "CBD & THC oil " and the observed tumor regression, we cannot definitively confirm that the tumor regression was due to taking CBD & THC oil by the patient.

Further research is needed:

Existing cancer treatments can have serious side effects, both physical and mental. This is why our patient opted for unconventional self-treatment. The limited number of case reports suggests that "CBD:THC" oil may have a positive tumor shrinking effect . Further research is needed to determine the actual mechanism of action, routes of administration, safe dosages, effects on various cancers, and possible adverse side effects of cannabinoid use.The potential for using cannabinoids as an alternative to augment or replace conventional primary cancer treatments is certainly worth researching.

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