The proliferation of CBD products on the market over the past two years is due to the legalization of hemp as an agricultural crop in the 2018 Farm Bill. This has allowed for the extraction of cannabidiol from hemp for therapeutic purposes.
CBD’s Use in Treatment of Health Conditions
The growth in the market for CBD products is driving research to discover the full array of benefits for cannabinoids, including cannabidiol. Thus far, evidence supports the claims of positive effects in the treatment of numerous physical and mental health conditions, including high blood pressure, some neurological disorders, anxiety and depression and PTSD. The scientific body of evidence for incorporating CBD into cancer treatments is growing.
What Is Cancer?
Cancer is the generic name given to a set of diseases caused by the abnormal proliferation of cell division. Some of the most common types of cancer are lung, breast, colorectal, prostate and skin cancer. The signs and symptoms of cancer vary depending on where the cancer originates.
How Is Cancer Treated?
Regardless of where a cancer originates, it forms from similar processes. As such, treatment approaches are similar, even while the signs and symptoms might vary. Surgery to remove the tumor is frequently a first response. Radiation can also be used to try kill off cancer cells or prevent continued tumor growth. Immunotherapy and targeted drug treatments are also common.
At more advanced stages of cancer, chemotherapy is the course of action. The drugs used in chemotherapy are targeted for the type of cancer. Chemotherapy is a potent form of treatment that has numerous side effects, including hair loss, compromised immune system, nausea, vomiting and neuropathic pain.
CBD in Cancer Treatment
There has been some evidence in lab studies on mice and in case studies on children with leukemia that CBD contributes to cell death and inhibits cancer cell migration. However one scientific research experiment that examined the impacts of THC on cell necrosis found that that compound actually induced proliferation of cell division rather than causing cell death. Another clinical trial found that CBD had no effect in reducing tumor size.
In spite of the mixed results for CBD’s effectiveness in treating cancer, the compound has been deemed useful in other aspects of cancer treatment. Cannabidiol can help reduce the pain caused by cancer, as well as alleviate the nausea, vomiting and neuropathic pain induced in chemotherapy treatments. Scientists are gaining a better understanding of the wide range of benefits to using CBD in treating health conditions, including cancer. The research is still in the early stages, however, and much work is needed before a clear picture of the positive properties of cannabidiol forms.