As an oncology pharmacist, I love providing you with facts and evidence about different treatments and products (like cannabis) but that’s not what makes me unique. I’m a cancer survivor myself. So what did I choose to do when I was going through treatment? Did I use marijuana? CBD? THC? What did I use it for? Read on to find out.
There are only a few reasons why I would use cannabis when receiving cancer treatment. I say there are only a few reasons because there are few reasons supported by evidence:
-Chemo induced nausea and vomiting
-Weight loss/decreased appetite
-Chronic nerve pain
When I was going through treatment I didn’t suffer from any of the symptoms listed above. I used various prescription and over the counter medications for nausea – which worked really well! I also devoted a lot of effort to adapting my diet during treatment to ensure I was consuming adequate calories. So I really didn’t seek out these products because there was no need.
Prior to being diagnosed, I had tried a few different products but wasn’t using anything regularly and therefore I can’t say I achieved any great results.
Before you decide to use cannabis as part of your treatment, I would ask yourself…
‘Why do I want to use a cannabis product?‘
‘What am I hoping to accomplish?’
I often ask my patients this question. I want to know the answer to this question because perhaps the product you are interested in, is not the best option. Perhaps, I can use my expertise to select a product that might work better or that might have less risk. The unfortunate part is that I often get the response, ‘I don’t know.’ If that’s the answer then I think we should re-consider putting yet another product into your body without a clear goal of what we are hoping to achieve. I lived by this same principle when I was going through treatment.
I believe that cannabis has a place in cancer care (reasons listed above) but the benefits are often blown way up and the risks are minimized. It’s not a ‘cure all’ product. No medication, supplement, natural product is a ‘cure all’ or has no risks despite what people might say. Just keep that in mind. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is too good to be true.
In case you missed it, check out Cannabis and Cancer for Dummies
The information shared does not constitute a medical consultation and is not intended to replace professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Consult with your doctor or other qualified health provider for questions regarding a medical condition.
Please do not disregard professional health provider advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read here. In the event of a medical emergency, call a doctor or 911 immediately.