This article was originally published on WeedMaps and appears here with permission.
As awareness of cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome (CHS) expands, both among medical doctors and patients, we are collectively becoming more and more able to identify a condition that has been historically hard to diagnose. After all, it seems counterintuitive that cannabis can cause many of the symptoms it’s used to treat.
Researchers are taking the current understanding of this severe and often debilitating condition one step further by attempting to pinpoint genetic markers that could be used to more readily diagnose CHS. This could potentially prevent those who are vulnerable from developing it in the first place.
Below, find out how CHS relates to genetics and what is being done in the medical world to combat the onset of the cannabis-based condition.
What is cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome?
Still not widely known or completely understood, cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome is a condition that is characterized by a strong, and often enduring, sensitivity to THC — and possibly other cannabinoids. CHS causes ongoing abdominal pain, cramping, nausea, and vomiting when cannabis is consumed.
What causes CHS?
While our understanding of the condition is still developing, CHS seems to occur most often in folks who consume high-potency cannabis and cannabis products regularly for long periods of time. What is happening in the body is a long-term and intense stimulation of the endocannabinoid system (ECS), along with other receptors and systems outside the ECS.
While medical science is still working to uncover the more complex and nuanced factors contributing to CHS, according to Dr. Ethan Russo, a renowned pioneer in cannabis research, it might be fair to say that CHS isn’t a functional gastrointestinal disorder so much as a “manifestation of gene and environmental interaction in a rare genetic disease, unmasked by excessive THC exposure.”
What doesn’t cause CHS? Pesticides.
Dr. Russo thinks it’s important to dispel the myth that CHS is caused by the pesticides or neem oil used in plant cultivation. “That just doesn’t hold water as an explanation,” Dr. Russo said. “There are more pesticides in use now than when CHS was first discovered, and pesticide reactions are quite different to what we see with CHS. Additionally, it’s been shown that synthetic cannabinoids, which are quite potent, can induce CHS — and while they are not pure, they don’t have pesticides in them.”
The difficulty and high cost of diagnosing CHS
The primary symptoms of CHS — cyclic abdominal cramping, nausea, and vomiting — are not unique to this condition, making CHS hard to diagnose. Because of this, CHS is considered among doctors to be a “diagnosis of exclusion,” or a diagnosis that is made when all other probable causes are ruled out.
According to an estimate made in a 2019 study, it took the average ER a whopping $76,920.92 in related testing expenses to diagnose CHS, while a 2018 paper estimated the average patient cost of a
Original Article: benzinga.com
Study: Marijuana Increases Risk of Premature Heart Attacks, Small Molecule in Soy Could Mitigate Risk
How does cannabis impact our health?
Although an old question, the answer is not a simple one. Marijuana is a specific plant with many compounds that differently impact our bodies and minds. What makes things even more complicated is the lack of cannabis research, thanks to the decades-old war on drugs.
Thankfully, with the ongoing momentum to legalize marijuana, more and more research is being conducted, providing consumers and the canna-curious with various results on the effects of consumption. Some are positive, some are not.
One of the newest studies, led by researchers at Stanford Medicine revealed that individuals who consume marijuana have a higher risk of heart disease and heart attack.
According to the study, THC or the psychoactive component of marijuana causes inflammation in endothelial cells that line the interior of blood vessels, reported Stanford Medicine. Furthermore, the compound known to stimulate the often yearned for sensation of being high can lead to atherosclerosis or the buildup of fats in artery walls in laboratory mice.
Researchers also discovered that a small molecule called genistein, naturally found in soy and fava …
Original Source: benzinga.com
InMed Pharmaceuticals Is Commercializing the Development of Rare Cannabinoids for the Wellness Market
Upon its acquisition of BayMedica LLC last year, InMed Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Nasdaq: INM) made the executive decision to forge a new path alongside its traditional domain in pharmaceutical drug development. With the acquisition long since closed, the end results are starting to bear fruit. The company has already launched B2B sales of the rare cannabinoid cannabidivarin (CBDV) in the U.S. health and wellness sector. This is but a preview of additional product launches that will be introduced to market in the coming quarters.
High up on the priority list is tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV), a cannabinoid chemical found in cannabis that shares broad similarities in molecular structure to tetrahydrocannabinol THC. Incredibly, the reduction of one sidechain, thereby reducing the molecule by two carbons, producing enough of a differentiated effect that preliminary research suggests that THCV could provide distinctive benefits to consumers—particularly at titrated doses.
According to Jay Denniston, chief scientist at BellRock Brands, THCV is a unique cannabinoid that has potential therapeutic benefits for both appetite control and to provide a focused, energetic sense of euphoria. “At …
The 7-Hour Itch: 3 Women With Eczema Describe the Ways They Combat Nighttime Flare-Ups
If you have eczema, you know what it’s like – that frustrating struggle to catch some ZZZ’s.
The problem is at once physical and emotional. “When my eczema is flared, nighttime often fills me with anxiety,” says Nicola Johnston, a digital content creator who lives in Carlisle, England, near the border of Scotland. “I have experienced nights in so much pain that I cannot sleep, and I’ve scratched so hard that my sheets were covered in blood. This is why I’ve worked to establish a good evening routine that will allow me to have a comfortable night’s sleep and get the rest that my body needs.”
But that rest can be elusive when you’re tormented by “itching, flaky skin, raised red rashes, cuts, skin tightness,” the symptoms listed by Elise Loubatieres, a London-based editor and beauty influencer. In many patients, eczema is itchiest at night, sometimes due to a lack of time for self-care earlier in the day. Natalie Findley, a holistic chef from Whistler, British Columbia, has had a similar experience. “Nighttime flare-ups taught me that something wasn’t working,” she says. “Not getting enough sleep was not doing me any good.”
If you want to turn down eczema flare-ups, finding out what works best for you calls for trial and error. But it also helps to get advice from people who understand firsthand what you’re going through. Here, three women who’ve been there offer tips on how to prepare for bed, get as comfy as possible, deal with symptoms, and reset your emotions in the morning.
Getting Ready for Bed
When it comes to preparing for bed, Findley favors consistency. “I try to keep my routine the same each night,” she says. Before doing anything, she sets “an intention to sleep better.” From there, Findley likes “to cleanse and moisturize my skin, drink some herbal tea, do some journaling, read, express gratitude, and then I am in bed by 10 p.m.”
An equally firm believer in the step-by-step approach, Johnston focuses first and foremost on comfort. “I start my bedtime routine by having a lukewarm bath to soothe my skin, if my skin is feeling particularly flared,” she says. “I then apply an emollient-based product that is going to lock in moisture and be slowly absorbed through the night. I put on lightweight satin nightwear that keeps me cool. In making up my bed, I personally prefer a silk pillow, as this is gentler on my facial eczema and doesn’t absorb any product I apply to my face like a cotton material would.”
Loubatieres scrupulously preps her skin and takes medication to prevent symptoms later. “I have been prescribed antihistamines to help with the itching,” she explains. “I also make sure that I apply emollients to my skin liberally and frequently in the hour leading up to bedtime.”
Under the Covers
To Findley, the choice of bedding fabric is less important than the way it’s washed. “I don’t use any particular kind of sheets to relieve my eczema, but I use natural and clean laundry detergents.” she says. “Even though many regular products claim to be clean, they use a lot of harmful chemicals and ingredients in detergents that aggravate eczema and your overall health. I use detergents that are hypoallergenic and without any fragrances. My favorite laundry detergent is Tru Earth.” Her bedside companion is also natural and gentle: “If I need some relief, I always use calendula and comfrey-based salve, with some shea butter, to calm the itchiness and dry skin.”
Johnston has an unusual trick for dealing with one of eczema’s side effects – a trick that involves a trip to the nail salon. “A great tip I have found is having acrylic gel manicures,” she notes. “It means that your nail itself becomes thicker and doesn’t break your skin when you’re scratching in the night. This has been a great help with healing my eczema.”
Aware that overheating can bring on eczema, Loubatieres takes a proactive approach. “I try to stay cool using a stand-alone fan, and I also use a handheld fan to pinpoint itchy areas for some relief,” she says. “I ensure that my sheets and sleepwear are either 100% cotton or silk to reduce irritation. I also have eczema gloves and Cosi Care [aka “safe scratchers”], which are itching tools that allow you to satisfy an itch without causing damage.”
When You Can’t Sleep
Whenever she begins to feel itchy, Findley does simple breathing exercises to calm her body. “I close my eyes, breathe in slowly and count to five, and hold for 2 seconds, then breathe out slowly and count to seven. Or I will just breathe in slowly until my chest and belly are full with air, hold for a few seconds, and breathe out slowly all the way. I repeat this multiple times until I’m relaxed. I also imagine myself sinking into my pillow as I breathe out, and it relaxes me and my muscles until I finally fall asleep.”
Johnston tries to nap during the day whenever possible. That way, in the event of a nighttime flare-up, she’s not completely exhausted the next day, And the extra rest is also calming. “By keeping my daytime stress levels to a minimum,” she says, flare-ups become less likely.
As Loubatieres sees it, you’ve lost the battle when you give in to the urge to itch. “At night I tend to get what I call ‘scratch attacks,’ where I uncontrollably and incessantly scratch despite breaking skin and causing myself pain,” she says. “It feels very satisfying in the moment and provides relief from that bone-deep itching sensation. But I try to get up and distract myself in some way. If I stay in bed and don’t keep my hands busy, I’m more likely to indulge in a scratch.” Indeed, taking up a hobby – drawing, knitting, playing guitar, anything that involves using your hands – can be an ideal diversion between a flare-up and the welcome moment when you feel really sleepy.
The Morning After
In the light of day, after successfully dealing with her nighttime flare-ups, Findley developed a fresh philosophy. “I made it a habit to clean up my diet and reduce stress and anxiety with meditation, journaling, and sleep hygiene. To treat the root cause of my issue, I switched to a plant-based diet. I also cut out dairy, as it’s pretty inflammatory. … I drink a lot of water each day. Now my eczema has cleared up! I find that fueling your body with the proper nutrients will support your immune system, therefore improving your eczema.”
Johnston emphasizes the importance of knowing your true self. “Often, it feels like you are your eczema, like it’s a defining characteristic,” she says. “It’s important to learn that your value comes from you and not your skin. I also learned to be kind to my skin. Not looking at it with hatred and resentment, but to see my eczema as a friend that was telling me there is an imbalance somewhere that I need to put right. It’s really important to listen to your body and notice your triggers.”
Whatever strategies you adopt, Loubatieres says, you should treat yourself with compassion. “After a scratch attack, I personally get a huge amount of guilt,” she admits. “I think I’ve caused my skin a lot of harm. However, I have to remind myself that it’s a condition that I cannot control. Skin eventually heals.” Her best advice for getting a good night’s sleep: “Don’t be so hard on yourself.”
Source Here: webmd.com
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