Asthma and Medicinal Cannabis

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What is Asthma?

Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the respiratory system caused by the sum of inflammation, hyperresponsiveness ( increase bronchoconstrictor activity ) and intermittent obstruction of the airways. Its clinical expression is variable, but mainly consists of shortness of breath, coughing, chest tightness and wheezing. Asthma attacks all age ranges, but generally it begins in infancy. There is no cure, but there are various treatments that aim to address the symptoms to improve the quality of life.

What is an asthma attack?

When asthma attacks occur, the muscles surrounding the airways become tight, thus narrowing the airway . If this situation is left unchecked, the symptoms may worsen and generate an extreme narrowing, since at the cellular level cells begin to produce more mucus, which decreases the chances of air entering the lungs.

The bronchodilator effect of cannabinoids, administered in the form of oils, allows positive results in people with asthma.

Use of medical cannabis as a treatment for asthma

Studies have shown that smoking marijuana produces bronchodilation in both healthy individuals as well as asthmatics. According to a study in “British Journal of Pharmacology ” ( 2014 ) …concluded that : ” The activation of CB1 synaptic pre receptors inhibit cholinergic contraction in human bronchi and the inhibitory effects of cannabinoids on cholinergic contraction may explain the acute bronchodilation experienced by individuals who smoke marijuana”. [1]

This action is strengthened by the more commonly known, traditional consumption of cannabis which is rich in CBD and contains anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects. Thus, its medicinal use to treat inflammatory disorders, such as asthma is widely accepted by the scientific community. [2]

Bibliography on Asthma and Medicinal Cannabis

[1] Cannabinoids inhibit cholinergic contraction in human airways through prejunctional CB1 receptors. S Grassin-Delyle,1,5 E Naline,1,2 A Buenestado,1 C Faisy,1,3,4 J-C Alvarez,2,5 H Salvator,1 C Abrial,1 C Advenier,1 L Zemoura,6 and P Devillier1,2. Br J Pharmacol. 2014 Jun; 171(11): 2767–2777.

[2] ANALGESIC AND ANTIINFLAMMATORY ACTIVITY OF CONSTITUENTS OF CANNABIS SATIVA L. E.A. Formukong, A.T. Evans, and F.J. Evans. INFLAMMATION, Vol 12, No. 4, 1988

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