Medical Cannabis and Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis (UC) are two types of inflammatory bowel disease that occur together (IBD). While Crohn’s Disease most frequently affects the small intestine in a distinctive “skip lesion” pattern, it may affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract. Inflammation of the large intestine and rectum, known as UC or Crohn’s disease, affects a thinner layer of cell walls. This recurrent inflammation in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract caused by both diseases results in IBD, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Check out our guide on Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis to learn more about how cannabis may help your specific condition.
The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation, while recognizing several FDA-approved and disease-modifying therapies for this illness, endorses the use of medical marijuana to alleviate the symptoms. According to the official foundation position statement, “Many studies have revealed a large proportion of patients with abdominal surgery, chronic abdominal pain, and/or low quality of life index. Furthermore, several research demonstrates an improvement in IBD-related symptoms including less pain, nausea reduction, and improved appetite and sleep.”
Cannabis is thought to interact with the body via the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which comprises fat-based neurotransmitters that regulate the body’s response to pain, inflammation, and temperature homeostasis.
When cannabis is consumed, it binds to cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 in the body. The CB1 receptors are most often found in the central nervous system (CNS) whereas CB2 receptors are present in soft tissues, immune cells, and various organs.
Cannabinoids, according to researchers in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences as well as other gastroenterology journals, cause P-glycoprotein (P-gp) to be released and slow the body’s assault on itself by white blood cells called neutrophils.
Use of cannabis for inflammatory bowel disease
Inflammatory bowel disease has serious symptoms and a variety of risks. Fortunately, one of cannabis’ most popular medical advantages is the ability to decrease inflammation. People with IBD frequently try different therapies to find something that will assist them to manage their symptoms. The majority of traditional strategies for treating and alleviating symptoms have numerous negative side effects and collateral damages.
Recently, medical cannabis has been embraced by 67% of IBD patients as a means to relieve pain, nausea, hunger stimulation, better sleep, inflammation reduction, and even the need for pharmaceutical medications. In addition, 33% of UC sufferers and 50% of Crohn’s disease patients use cannabis for symptom relief.
CBD was ineffective on its own for IBD, according to a preclinical study done on animals. THC was the most effective cannabinoid, while CBD was useless by itself in this research. To see if THC or CBD is good therapy for inflammatory bowel disease, rodents were given colitis. The researchers discovered that THC and CBD worked even better when combined with a lower dose of THC to CBD than when they were given alone. The study concluded with successful results, and the authors stated that future IBD treatment might be achieved by combining THC and CBD.
A 2019 research revealed that cannabis use was linked to a substantial reduction in the risk of partial or total colectomy and bowel obstruction when compared to people who did not smoke marijuana. They were also less likely to be hospitalized.
Professionals feel that the present pharmaceutical medicines and therapies are insufficient for patients with this condition and that their quality of life is harmed as a result of such persistent symptoms.
Cannabinoids for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease
Avoiding surgery is a major consideration for anybody undergoing treatment, thus a good outcome is critical. According to the National Institute of Health, medicinal marijuana can help relieve unpleasant IBD symptoms, with several studies demonstrating this. According to a 2016 Gastroenterology and Hepatology study, “cannabis use should be restricted to symptomatic relief in patients with severe IBD who are refractory to the standard-of-care and alternative therapies.”
In 2018, the journal interviewed University of Michigan Medicine Assistant Professor of Medicine Jami Kinnucan, MD, who confirmed that cannabis helps IBS patients: “There is presently a significant unmet need in the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease with standard medical therapy,” Dr. Kinnucan added. “Despite progress in disease activity, many patients continue to experience persistent clinical symptoms that have a major impact on their quality of life.”
If you’re thinking about using medical cannabis to treat IBS, talk with your medical marijuana doctor first. More study and clinical trials are needed to fully discover how cannabinoids assist individuals suffering from GI disorders. Currently, there isn’t enough evidence to show that these chemicals have a strong enough disease-modifying effect, the way other currently proven therapy choices do.
Cannabis can influence the symptoms and course of IBD, leading to serious problems if not managed properly by competent healthcare staff. Here is a short rundown of the possible consequences of cannabis use in people with IBD:
- Relieves in nausea and pain.
- Relieves anxiety and stress.
- Improve appetite, which helps maintain weight
- Improve your quality of life
- Reduce the chances of additional problems developing.
- Reduce inflammation
Inflammatory Bowel Disease Symptoms & Causes
The CDC says there is no specific birthplace for IBD. autoimmune diseases are defined as IBD disorders. When the body’s immune system believes a foreign invader is present in the body and launches an attack on healthy tissue, it is known as autoimmune disease. This indicates that the body is attacking the intestines, which leads to severe discomfort, inflammation, and ultimately tissue damage. When the immune system fails to adequately respond to environmental factors, the gastrointestinal tract becomes inflamed.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a catchall term for diseases that feature chronic irritation of the digestive tract. Ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn’s disease are two types of IBD, according to the Mayo Clinic. UC is an inflammation of the innermost layer of the person’s large intestine and rectum, also known as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Crohn’s disease is another type of illness that irritates, however, it affects the entire length and lining of the digestive system, which then spreads into afflicted tissues.
Colitis and Crohn’s disease are two inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) that can cause diarrhea, abdominal pain, cramping, fatigue, fever, lack of appetite, and weight loss. They might both result in serious life-threatening repercussions. The exact causes are yet unknown, although risk factors including age, race, family history, smoking, anti-inflammatory drugs, and living conditions were identified. Diet and tension have been shown to aggravate patients; however, they do not cause the illness.
Individuals with IBD are at a greater risk of developing colon cancer, eye irritation, skin irritation, blood clots, joint discomfort, and possible liver damage from primary sclerosing cholangitis due to their disease. Individuals with Crohn’s disease, for example, may suffer from bowel obstruction, ulcers, malnutrition, anal fissures. fistulas. Individuals with UC may be vulnerable to toxic megacolon, colon holes, and extreme dehydration.