The Generation Report: Ethan Andrew says to Fox News that he started smoking marijuana during his sophomore year of high school in Colorado to help with his anxiety. Like many teens, he said he thought it was “just weed” and did not see the harm in smoking the popular drug containing THC, the active chemical found in cannabis that produces a “high.”
His causal marijuana use turned to smoking potent cannabis flower and concentrates, known as dabs, which contain high levels of THC. Andrew said he smoked every day from morning to night. He said, ‘I couldn’t think or sleep without it,’ the 23-year-old told Fox News. ‘When you’re a stoner, you think, ‘I’ll be fine. In the future, I’ll clean myself up.’ However, it was too late. Two years after becoming an avid marijuana user, Ethan was only 18 when he developed cannabis-induced psychosis, a condition including severe hallucinations, delusions and paranoia.
“I had to quit my job because the voices in my head were so distracting,” Ethan said, adding that the worst symptom was confusing dreams with reality. “I’d wake up and tell my friends, ‘Yeah, remember when we hung out and did that?’ And they would have no idea what I’m talking about.”
The CNN says on a report Using marijuana every day can raise a person’s risk of coronary artery disease, or CAD, by a third compared with those who never partake, a new study found. A growing body of evidence suggests that cannabis is not entirely without harm and may actually cause cardiovascular disease, said lead study author Dr. Ishan Paranjpe, a resident physician at Stanford University. The study — which has not yet been published -— will be presented Sunday at the annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology.
“Thus, the decision to use cannabis must be carefully weighed against the potential for serious heart disease,”
People who used weed only once a month or less had no significant risk, the study found. The results held true even after researchers factored out other potential causes of coronary heart disease, such as age, sex and major cardiovascular risk factors — high blood pressure, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, obesity, smoking and alcohol use.
The study used Mendelian randomization (MR) to determine risk, which other studies on the topic have not, Paranjpe said in an email. The MR method measures gene variations known to be related to a modifiable risk factor to determine the causal influence of the risk factor. “While other work has also linked cannabis with CAD, there are several potential confounders that may explain this relationship. Our MR analysis suggests this relationship may be directly causal,” Paranjpe said.
Marijuana and the heart
Why does marijuana appear to damage the heart and blood vessels? First, it increases heart rate and blood pressure immediately after each use, according to the CDC. “Marijuana smoke also delivers many of the same substances researchers have found in tobacco smoke — these substances are harmful to the lungs and cardiovascular system,” the agency says. Smoking or vaping any substance, including cannabis, should be avoided due to the risk of harm to the heart, lungs and blood vessels, the American Heart Association warned in 2020.
The AHA’s guidance released then pointed to studies that found heart rhythm abnormalities, such as tachycardia and atrial fibrillation, could occur within an hour after weed containing delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, was smoked. (THC is the part of the marijuana plant that creates a high.)
Other research has shown smoking weed has triggered heart attacks and leads to a higher risk of strokes and heart failure in people with underlying heart disease.
Notably, the new study was not able to tease out whether different types of cannabis use — such as consuming edibles versus smoking weed, for example — made a difference in a person’s risk of developing CAD. However, since THC gets to the brain faster when smoked, the researchers argue future research should investigate various usage methods and their impact on the heart.
Edited by MK, Source: Fox News, CNN, National Institutes of Health