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Cannabis and its Adverse Effects, Cannabis Dependence and Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS)

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Cannabis for Cannabis and its Adverse Effects, Cannabis Dependence and Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS)

Cannabis is relatively safe, and there has been no instance of a death via overdose of natural cannabis alone. However, this doesn’t mean there aren’t some things to be concerned about, just as you should be concerned about with any other medication. These include side-effects such as:

  • feeling drowsy, tired or lethargic
  • feeling faint, nauseous or sick (also a treatment for such problems)
  • having problems with memory or concentrating
  • experiencing mild hallucinations
  • feeling confused, anxious or paranoid (also a treatment for anxiety)

Other concerns include cannabis clashing with other medications, in particular opioids, sedatives like benzodiazepines, antidepressants and blood thinners such as warfarin or aspirin.

As for cannabis dependence, although it is not physically addictive, approximately 9% of regular users can display cannabis use disorder, which includes compulsive cannabis use despite negative effects. However, most people who wish to stop using cannabis find little difficulty in doing so.

As for cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome (CHS), it is a rare condition that occurs after several years of regular, heavy cannabis consumption. It causes compulsive, repeated and severe vomiting after using cannabis, which is only relieved after hot showers and stopping cannabis use. It is theorized that CHS occurs after long-term consumption of THC, where its antiemetic (nausea-stopping) effects stop and start having the opposite effect.

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Animal Study

28

Clinical Meta-analysis

7

Double Blind Human Trial

18

Human Trial

34

Laboratory Study

7

Meta-analysis

190

Total studies

Cannabis and its Adverse Effects, Cannabis Dependence and Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS)

284

Negative

163 studies

58%

Inconclusive

72 studies

25%

Positive

49 studies

17%

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