Most people will know about marijuana as a recreational drug. But in recent years marijuana has gained more and more popularity as a medical drug for various chronic disorders, often in relation to pain. Today I’d like to look at medical marijuana for interstitial cystitis.
Could it relieve the symptoms of interstitial cystitis or even effectively treat it?
Marijuana, also known as cannabis, is a plant and has several active plant chemicals: Cannabidiol (CBD), Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), Cannabinol (CBN) and Cannabichromene (CBC).
These chemicals have different actions in the body:
CBD: is a non-psychoactive compound of the plant that is found in varying quantities depending on the plant strain. It has anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties .
THC: This is the most well-known and most abundant cannabinoid. It is the psychoactive chemical of the plant. THC acts on the cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 in the body. THC has been shown to be beneficial for managing nausea and vomiting, stimulating appetite, improving sleep and providing pain relief. Moreover, it also has anti-inflammatory properties .
CBN: is the breakdown product of THC. CBN is mildly psychoactive. It most notably serves as a sleep aid .
CBC: is one of the major cannabinoids in some strains of marijuana. It isn’t as widely studied as other cannabinoids but has been shown to have analgesic, antidepressant, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, anti-proliferative, anti-anxiety, and bone and brain cell stimulating effects .
Cannabinoid Receptors of the Endocannabinoid System
There are two main cannabinoid receptors (receptors for cannabinoids to dock on): CB1 and CB2.
CB1 receptors are mainly located in the nervous system and they are responsible for stimulating the psychoactive effect when THC docks to them.
CB2 receptors on the other hand are located in the gastrointestinal and immune system and are believed to be responsible for the therapeutic effects of cannabinoids.
Cannabinoids and IC
Both cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 have been found to be present in the bladder. Especially CB2 seems to be highly expressed in bladder cells .
Both THC and CBD cannabinoids activate CB2 receptors.
Studies have shown that the activation of CB2 receptors by cannabinoids can effectively inhibit inflammation in the bladder [5, 6].
Cannabinoids have also been shown to inhibit bladder contractions in mice via the CB1 receptor .
THC and CBD have also been shown to help reduce urinary urgency and incontinence .
Moreover, cannabinoids have been shown to be an effective pain-relief for IC patients .
So all in all, medical marijuana shows a lot of potential for interstitial cystitis. Medical marijuana is now legal in several states in America and CBD has recently become legal in some European countries, including the UK.
What are your experiences with medical marijuana? Let me know in the comments!
Pin it for later:
- Medical Marijuana Inc Medicinal Value of Cannabidiol (CBD) 26 October, 2015 http://www.medicalmarijuanainc.com/medicinal-value-of-cannabidiol-cbd/
- Medical Marijuana Inc Medicinal Value of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) 29 October, 2015 http://www.medicalmarijuanainc.com/medicinal-value-of-tetrahydrocannabinol-thc/
- Medical Marijuana Inc Medicinal Value of Cannabinol (CBN) 29 October, 2015 http://www.medicalmarijuanainc.com/medicinal-value-of-cannabinol-cbn/
- Medical Marijuana Inc Medicinal Value of Cannabichromene (CBC) 29 October, 2015 http://www.medicalmarijuanainc.com/medicinal-value-of-cannabichromene-cbc/
- Wang, Z.-Y., Wang, P., & Bjorling, D. E. (2013). Activation of cannabinoid receptor 2 inhibits experimental cystitis. American Journal of Physiology – Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology, 304(10), R846–R853. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3652164/.
- Wang, Z.-Y., Wang, P., and Bjorling, D.E. (2014, April). Treatment with a cannabinoid receptor 2 agonist decreases severity of established cystitis. The Journal of Urology, 191(4), 1153-1158. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4163202/.
- Fullhause, C., Campeau, L., Sibaev, A., Storr, M., Hennenberg, M., Gratzke, C., Stief, C., Hedlund, P., and Andersson, K.-E. (2014, January). Bladder function in a cannabinoid receptor type 1 knockout mouse. BJU International, 113(1), 144-151. Retrieved from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/bju.12350/full.
- Brady, C.M., DasGupta, R., Dalton, C., Wiseman, O.J., Berkley, K.J., and Fowler, C.J. (2004, August). An open-label pilot study of cannabis-based extracts for bladder dysfunction in advanced multiple sclerosis. Multiple Sclerosis, 10(4), 425-33.Retrieved from http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1191/1352458504ms1063oa.
- Herbert Krenn, MD, PhD, Lukas K Daha, MD, Wolfgang Oczenski, MD, Robert D Fitzgerald, MD A Case of Cannabinoid Rotation in a Young Woman With Chronic Cystitis JPSM January 2003 Volume 25, Issue 1, Pages 3–4 http://www.jpsmjournal.com/article/S0885-3924(02)00601-2/fulltext
Matt MernaghSeptember 25, 2017
Informative blog post! Medical Cannabis is federally legal in Canada.
Lisa EhrmanSeptember 27, 2017
Thanks for this info. I wish I could try CBD for chronic pain.
LaylaSeptember 27, 2017
Is it illegal where you are, Lisa?
PatrickMarch 3, 2018
Just order some weed on the darknet or buy some from basically anyone in society. Screw what the law says. Most states don’t even convict people for MJ anymore, even the most stringent states. Most cops will let you go if they catch you with it.
Is it really worth all the suffering you go through to deprive yourself of medicine that should be legal?
BrianOctober 20, 2017
Wow, that’s really amazing. I’m permanently incontinent and fully as well, so I’m forced to wear diapers 24/7, so I’m not sure if it would help me, but I would be eager to try and it’s not only for the weed effect, that I have never tried to be honest. Shame, that there are such a big restrictions in the state that I’m now. Maybe if I have moved to california, things would have been easier, here getting a prescription is really tough. I will definitely have to share this article with my friends, who are struggling with being incontinent as well, but they are not fully incontinent as I am, so it may be a great help for them. I have already recommended kegel exercises for two of my friends, that had minor leaks and one of them has basically already healed and regained his bladder control completely and second one is still struggling, but he had some more intensive leaking than the first one. I’ll tell them to get some medical marijuana to try, one of them is located in Arizona and second one is in Utah. I don’t know how are the laws in those states to be honest, but I heard, that Arizona is pretty much medical marijuana friendly. What’s one of the worst factors with incontinence also is that you have to buy a lot of new diapers and they are really expensive. As I’m fully incontinent and I have to use really a lot of them I started to order in bulk from hexa & co – which is a really good company with great prices and pretty good quality, probably they are so cheap because they are new in the market, but they help me financially a lot with those diapers.
SuzanneDecember 12, 2017
Prior to ordering CBD my head was killing me and I could not get any relief from my bladder regardless of what I did. I stay on a healthy diet. No sugar, no grains, no MSG, no alcohol.. you know the drill. I eat properly for RA as well but nothing seemed to work. I will not say I am I 100% pain free all day everyday but, with the amount of water soluble BioCBDplus I can afford to purchase at this time I feel the best I have in a very very very long time! That, my husband and I are grateful for! I’ve told my doctors about this discovery and they are excited too! We are looking forward to lowering pharmaceutical meds for the first time in a very long time! My husband and I tell everyone, young and old! At 41 I’m too young to feel as old as I have regardless of health issues. I’m grateful for a natural medical option over chemicals any day! -Suzanne
Amy LaRueFebruary 27, 2018
Suzanne, What brand and grade of CBD oil do you take? Soooo miserable with IC!
PatrickMarch 3, 2018
CBD is a chemical, so is THC. Whether a chemical comes from nature or is synthesized has little bearing on its safety. Cyanide and strichnynne are both natural, so is lead. Not exactly safe.
Belle DushnerJune 27, 2018
Nowadays the marijuana has been all over and one of the reasons why many people used this as a medicine because it really helps a lot. And one of those is CBD oil, I am one of the users that proves that this is a good medicine. I came across this article https://www.worldwide-marijuana-seeds.com/blogs/marijuana-news/what-is-the-biggest-threat-to-the-marijuana-industry and I read some of the facts that we need to know about all of these issues.