Article by Jay Schmoeker, Twelve High Chicks
We’ve said “talk to your doctor about cannabis” before, and meant educate your GP about its benefits for salving or managing illnesses. But there are other reasons to talk to other doctors about cannabis too, even recreational use: cannabis conflicts with medications.
I came across a Tumblr post recently warning people to cop to using cannabis to anesthesiologist … so you don’t wake up during surgery. Pretty frightening since I’m facing surgery and had no idea this was even a thing — I’ve never been anaesthetized while a regular cannabis user.
But Tumblr isn’t a reliable medical resource, so I went looking for professional evidence. And found even moreexamples of cannabis conflicts with medications. I’m not a medical scientist, so some of it went over my head — but boy is there reason to talk to your doctors about any cannabis use, if you’re gonna be taking regular medication or are going under general anaesthetic.
Cannabis Conflicts with Medications
Activists fought to access medical cannabis because we know cannabis has medical uses — which means it has medical conflicts as well. Just because it’s natural and contains chemicals similar to what our bodies produce doesn’t make cannabis harmless; chemicals interact with other chemicals, after all. Just think about what happens when you mix a little cannabis and a little alcohol: you can get a lot faded. Cannabis is safe alone, but not necessarily safe with other substances.
We have to consider how cannabinoids affect the way our body metabolizes other medications. We need those medications to work how our doctors expect them to. (And cannabis users also probably want to know what medications decrease and increase the effects of cannabinoids.)
Impact on Medication
Unfortunately, prohibition continues to make it hard to research cannabis and its impacts on other medications. But we know its interactions with the body’s metabolizing enzymes. Potentially, cannabis conflicts with medications because of those effects.