Application of Medicinal Marijuana for Glaucoma Treatment

With the increase in marijuana legalization around the country, many are interested in medical marijuana as a treatment for glaucoma.

When medical marijuana was legalized in some global territories, one of the enhancers of the law was the fact that it was useful to treat a variety of ailments, including glaucoma. Decades of research have shown that two components in the marijuana – THC and other cannabinoids are effective in facilitating the treatment of glaucoma. Medical marijuana is a natural remedy for glaucoma, and as with all cases of traditional medicine versus natural methods, this is a controversial case. While you can always buy weed online in canada, when it comes to glaucoma treatment, take the time to research your condition before you decide what path you intend to take.

What causes glaucoma?

Glaucoma is an inherited eye condition that affects the optic nerve. This occurs due to a buildup of intraocular pressure inside the eye. If the pressure builds up too high, the optic nerve operation will be impaired, and blindness can be induced. The treatment of glaucoma therefore, aims to reduce the intraocular pressure, in order to facilitate appropriate vision. When it come to treatments, conventional medical treatments are more potent than medicinal marijuana. There are also next generation pharmaceuticals that are being developed to treat the condition. Despite this however, there is merit for using natural remedies to treat acute glaucoma.

How drugs work to treat glaucoma

Drug mechanisms of action operate by facilitating improved circulation in the eye. There are various routes and mechanisms that this can take place. Prescribed drugs to treat glaucoma include epinephrine, pilocarpine, timolol among others.  The mechanism of action is different for the drugs, but the ultimate effect is the same – reduction of intraocular pressure. Additionally, if severe cases develop, glaucoma can be treated by surgical intervention.

Medicinal marijuana, does a similar thing in terms of its effects on the eyes. Research is still being done to identify the active ingredient in the hundreds of complexes in the marijuana plant that are bioactive with respect to glaucoma. Studies have found THC to be effective, but there is additional evidence that other cannabinoids with a similar molecular structure, have the ability to be effective as well.

There is scientific proof that medical marijuana does reduce the intraocular pressure of the eyes. However, there are a few concerns that opthalmologist’s have, be ensure that you are aware of the potential pitfalls that have been identified by the medical community. While providing the benefits, you’ll actually need to be aware of the following:

  1. Be wary of the method you use to treat your glaucoma. Smoking versus ingested forms versus injections produce differing results.
  2. The efficacy is less than prescriptions. You will need to take your treatment every three to four hours.

Consult with your doctor before you purchase your medical marijuana. Doctors prefer for you to treat your glaucoma for 24 hours, so at this rate doctors state that you’ll need to use your treatments at least 6-8 times per day. From the smoking perspective, there are concerns about your cognition. Additional side effects have also been noted, so take the appropriate precaution. Doctors are primarily concerned because there are some patients who end up with conditions such as a low blood pressure, and where the heart is concerned a high blood pressure.

In summary, when it comes to glaucoma, your doctor will know best. For acute conditions, you can attempt to purchase medical marijuana and test it out. For more serious conditions, it is best to stick to prescription drugs.

Disclaimer: Do not attempt to treat your glaucoma without the consultation of your physician. Your eyes are the most sensitive part of your body, so treat them with care.

References:

  1. Glaucoma: https://healthcare.utah.edu/healthfeed/postings/2019/01/glaucoma-marijuana.php
  2. Marijuana as Medicine: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK224386/

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