Controlling Nausea and Vomiting with Medicinal Cannabis

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Nausea and Vomiting linked to conditions

Vomiting, or emesis is the violent, spasmodic evacuation of gastric contents through the mouth. This response is a natural bodily mechanism to expel something inside your stomach to protect against the discomfort. The feeling you get just before (prodrome) is called nausea, which can precede the vomiting/emesis or happen by itself. Symptoms that often accompany both conditions are pallor, tachycardia, reflux, among others.

Nausea and vomiting are present in a large number of diseases, either due to the disease itself or because of a treatment for the disease that may have caused the illness. Due to the fact that the nausea occurs due to other treatments, it remains very difficult to treat. Difficulties also arise with patients who are weak due to ongoing rigorous treatments, such as cancer. These people suffer greatly from the constant nausea and vomiting episodes that they must face due to their specific treatments they must undergo. Nausea and vomiting can be classified according to the moment in time they happen; they can be anticipatory (before or during treatment), acute (24 h after treatment) or late (after 24 h after treatment)

Medicinal Cannabis as an Alternative to Chemotherapy Side Effects

The analgesic effect of cannabinoids is one of the best characterized effects. The results of the studies suggest that cannabinoids may offer some benefit as an adjuvant treatment of cancer pain and neuropathic pain.

Research on anti-haematic treatments with Medicinal Cannabis

Due to the large amount of cannabinoid receptors ( CB1 and CB2 ) distributed throughout the gastrointestinal track ( GI ) , these substances greatly help to control and treat many GI diseases where vomiting and nausea frequently occurs [1]. Currently, there are some cannabinoid antiemetic agents used in the treatment of nausea and vomiting, such as nabilone. [2]

For cancer patients who must undergo chemotherapy, they will often at times lose their appetitie or taste. Cannabinoids can help to restore hunger in patients as well as a taste for the food that they may have become numb to. Since cannabinoids play such an important role in the treatment of these symptoms, we hope to see them utilized more in the future.

Bibliography on the use of Medicinal Cannabis for nausea and vomiting

1] The role of cannabinoids in regulation of nausea and vomiting, and visceral pain. Malik Z1, Baik DSchey RCurr Gastroenterol Rep. 2015 Feb;17(2):429. doi: 10.1007/s11894-015-0429-1.

[2] Cannabinoids for gastrointestinal diseases: potential therapeutic applications. Di Carlo G1, Izzo AAExpert Opin Investig Drugs. 2003 Jan;12(1):39-49.

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