Although it has been legal in Canada for nearly two decades, the use of medical cannabis still remains a hot topic of discussion in the medical world. Despite this, many people have used cannabis to treat all kinds of health conditions, even more, serious ones like cancer. From our medical marijuana doctors in BC to Ontario, doctors are finding cannabis may be beneficial in treating various symptoms.
One type of cancer that seems to be more vulnerable to cannabis is multiple myeloma, a cancer of the blood.
Multiple Myeloma: An Overview
Multiple myeloma is rare cancer that targets the plasma cells. Plasma cells are white blood cells that are found in the bone marrow along with other blood cells. They produce antibodies that fight off germs and prevent infections. When these cells become cancerous, they multiply uncontrollably to the point that they outnumber your other blood cells.
The myeloma cells also create too many antibodies that don’t attack germs but instead damage the marrow until they create bone lesions. Eventually, the cancerous cells will escape the bone marrow and spread to other parts of your body to cause even more damage.
Multiple Myeloma Symptoms
Because multiple myeloma has the potential to affect many parts of the body, the symptoms that people can experience may differ from one another.
Some common symptoms that you can have include:
- Low blood count – too many plasma cells can lead to conditions like anemia (low red blood cell count), and low platelet levels.
- Thickened blood – An unusually high white blood cell count can result in hyperviscosity, which is the usual cause for blood clots, nosebleeds, frequent bruising, and vertigo.
- Weakened Bones – Myeloma cells eat away at the bones without giving time to regenerate. This makes them easier to fracture and break. The cells can also spread outside the bones because of this.
- Kidney Damage – Overly high protein and calcium levels lead to kidney failure, which results in problems like fatigue, weight loss, inflammation, and nausea.
- Frequent or multiple infections – because the antibodies don’t protect the body anymore, your immune system is weakened and you become more susceptible to infections.
Some people with multiple myeloma don’t experience any of its symptoms until they have already suffered major organ damage. On some occasions, the cancer is discovered only after taking a blood or urine test.
How Medical Cannabis Helps With Multiple Myeloma
In a study back in 2018, it was discovered that cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which are both found in cannabis, are capable of slowing down the growth or even inducing the death of myeloma cells. They also prevent the cells from moving to other parts of the body.
CBD and THC were also shown to be especially effective when used alongside chemotherapy treatments.
This is something worth noting if you are planning on using CBD hemp products only.
Aside from dealing with the myeloma cells themselves, medical cannabis may also be used in alleviating its symptoms, especially when it comes to pain management. Cannabis is reported for having the following properties:
- Relieves pain
- Reduces inflammation
- Improves overall mood and appetite
- Treat spasming and nerve pain
Medical cannabis may also be for relieving the patient after cancer treatments. Some common chemotherapy side effects that it can treat include:
- Chronic pain
- Nausea and vomiting
- Neuropathic damage
- Weight loss
Seek Professional Advice First
Consult your doctor first before using medical cannabis for treating multiple myeloma. They can provide instructions on proper intake and if you should avoid certain pharmaceutical drugs.
Book an appointment with our dedicated doctors who can help prescribe medical cannabis today and find out the Apollo difference.