Did you see Bill Turnbull: Staying Alive on Channel 4? It’s a powerful documentary that follows the TV presenter and journalist currently living with advanced prostate cancer as he goes through chemotherapy, tries diets and complementary therapies, and speaks to others with the disease, including Stephen Fry.
Staying a healthy weight may also mean your prostate cancer is less likely to spread after surgery or radiotherapy. And if you’re having hormone therapy to treat your prostate cancer, your treatment may be less effective if you’re very overweight.
Q. Can cannabis help cure prostate cancer?
Bill Turnbull’s powerful documentary got plenty of people talking about the various treatment options he tried. One of our expert Clinical Nurse Specialists answers some commonly asked questions.
There’s some evidence that cannabis-based medicines can help with long-term pain, including pain caused by cancer. Currently doctors in the UK can only prescribe cannabis-based medicines to treat nausea or vomiting caused by chemotherapy – when other medicines haven’t worked. Cannabis-based medicines aren’t available to treat cancer-related pain unless you’re taking part in a clinical trial. If you’re interested, your doctor should be able to tell you about any clinical trials that might be suitable. You can also search for clinical trials at www.bepartofresearch.nihr.ac.uk
At the moment, we don’t know if cannabis can help treat prostate cancer. Some studies have looked at the effect of chemicals in cannabis, called cannabinoids, on prostate cancer cells. There are two main cannabinoids that have been investigated – THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol). The studies found that cannabinoids may stop prostate cancer cells from growing and dividing, cause prostate cancer cells to die, and stop prostate cancer cells from invading other tissues and spreading.
At the risk of sounding insensitive, you are right to be concerned about your friend. She has effectively chosen to have no real treatment. There is a lot of pseudo-science out there about cancer treatment and cannabis oil in particular. Fortunes have been made in the USA selling cannabis oil to desperate people, but I have yet to see a single independent, peer-reviewed, paper that unambiguously concluded that cannabis oil cures cancer in humans. People pussy foot around being polite and try to give reasoned arguments but I am fed up of this approach which seems to put these so-called cures on a par with legitimate therapies.
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Cannabis has proven effectiveness in pain relief and it obviously gets people high and some of its constituent parts might eventually form the basis of chemo-therapy but that’s as far as it goes.
Friend is using cannabis oil as treatment?
After some browsing online about cannabis oil. I don’t feel particulary happy about her choice of treatment. I understand it’s her choice and her life, I really do. But I read online that although cannabis may contain some things which have destroyed cancer cells in lab tests, this does not mean it will cure cancer. Also I’ve read that some people who used it then died soon after. She says she has done thorough research and frankly she might’ve looked into it. But I’m afraid she may have read a few dodgy links which may be misleading her.
Hi, my friend recently told me she is using cannabis oil and some thing tonic/lotion (I can’t recall which one) as treatment for her Leukaemia. Her doctor recommended her chemotherapy but she rejected him.
“There has been a lot of interest on the internet and in the press about cannnabis oil. But at the moment it isn’t known how helpful it might turn out to be in treating cancer and it isn’t readily available as a cancer treatment. We have a blog post which sums up the research so far which you might find helpful to look at. You can read more about this here.”
So I’m confused regarding cannabis oil. I don’t know whether it’s recommended heavily by doctors or not. Can anyone here give me more information about it? I chose to ask here because I think I’m less likely to encounter any pseudoscience or myths.
Quality, cleanliness and regulation are the biggest concerns.
In terms of purity, THC and CBD are both extracted from hemp and marijuana using essentially similar processes. But trace amounts of THC could still end up in CBD oil. And if the THC is at a high enough concentration, it could produce the psychoactive effects that THC is known for.
CBD oil can adversely affect liver function. In fact, this is on the warning label for Epidiolex.
Other sorts of substances have been found in CBD products, too, such as dextromethorphan, which is an ingredient in cough medicines. Heavy metals like lead and arsenic, pesticides and mold have also been found in CBD products.
Is CBD oil even legal?