Everyone knows of cannabidiol’s (CBD) medicinal benefits for a variety of pathologies, but there are some patients who require more tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) than most.
The positive outlook on CBD may have hampered the perception of the medical benefits provided by THC, which can have psychoactive effects on a patient. THC can affect different individuals in different ways. Some patients report that it eases their nausea and stimulates appetite. Others report that it eases their muscle spasms and relieves insomnia.
“High THC strains have also been known to help shrink cancerous tumors when given at a high dose”
Ongoing studies are currently investigating how THC can help these patients with their symptoms.
THC seems to manifest and express a cancer-killing factor called tumor necrosis factor (TNF). This causes apoptosis, or programmed cell death, of tumor cells.
However, it is important to note that too much THC can cause severe anxiety and panic attacks in vulnerable patients. Many patients find themselves walking into the emergency department because they are unable to tolerate such high amounts of THC. For these patients, physicians recommend starting higher with CBD concentrations and slowly increasing the THC content. This allows their bodies to become accustomed to the substance.
Studies have shown that most patients tend to build a tolerance to THC, meaning that without a break, higher levels are required to achieve positive effects. Essentially a patient who may have had adverse reactions to THC, can, later on, develop a tolerance to it with prolonged use.
Insomnia is another condition that THC helps to alleviate. In my own practice, I have seen countless patients who have used high THC to help them fall asleep and stay asleep. They consistently report more restful sleep and improvement in energy levels the following day. Some patients who are unable to sleep 4-5 days a week, find that high THC cannabis eases their symptoms with minimal side effects; especially when compared to physician-prescribed sleep medications like Ambien or Lorazepam.