Medical Marijuana Cards in VA - Rethink-Rx

Cannabis Helps Cancer Related Symptoms


Both the symptoms of cancer and the side effects of therapy against it can be debilitating. Cannabis helps.

Cancer and Treatment Side Effects:
A Personal Struggle

Your ReThink-Rx™ Doctor Will Help

Living with cancer is unsettling and unpleasant at best. Symptoms of cancer vary, and the unfortunate effects of the treatment can worsen an already unpleasant experience. Studies have identified potential benefits cannabis can have on the pain, fatigue, mood instability, weight loss, and nausea/vomiting that often accompany cancer and its treatment.

NAUSEA AND VOMITING. Studies confirm that marijuana eases these effects of cancer chemotherapy. In fact, the FDA has already approved dronabinol and nabilone, man-made cannabinoids similar to those found naturally in marijuana, to treat these symptoms when other nausea medicines don’t work.

PAIN. Marijuana can ease cancer-related pain. It binds to cannabinoid receptors in the brain and other parts of the body. Unlike many other pain medicines, marijuana is especially helpful for treating neuropathic pain, which may be caused by chemo- and radiation therapy. Marijuana also eases inflammation, which can also help with the pain of cancer.

NERVE PAIN. Neuropathy is characterized by weakness, numbness, or pain caused by nerve damage. It can happen because of cancer, chemotherapy or other cancer treatments like radiation therapy. Studies have found that marijuana is often better than other pain medicines for neuropathy, even opiates.

APPETITE AND WEIGHT LOSS. Marijuana may also help improve appetite for people with cancer. Many patients suffering from treatment-related nausea and vomiting find great relief with cannabis when many other anti-nausea medicines do not help.

DAY-TO-DAY LIVING. Patients with cancer who consume cannabis report improved pain control, less nausea and vomiting, greater well-being, improved mood, better appetite, and better functional capability. In short, their lives are more like normal with the help of cannabis.

Developing a successful strategy for improving your symptoms and elevating your quality of life with cancer involves several factors, and cannabis may play a role for many patients. Understanding the therapeutic principles of cannabis in cancer management will help greatly. Dosing strategies and product selection are important. Your ReThink-Rx™ doctor will explain how this works and help you develop a strategy that works best for you.

Certain types of cancers need particular attention, as the interplay with cannabis therapy can differ. Your ReThink-Rx practitioner will help explain these differences. Here are some examples:

Additionally, some early evidence now raises the possibility that medical marijuana may have anti-cancer properties that may improve clinical outcomes with cancer. The research is still young, but some patients and practitioners are hopeful that this line of research may produce better cancer drugs. One cannabis-based therapy that has gained interest in this regard is Rick Simpson Oil, extracted from the cannabis plant. 

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