“Cystic fibrosis is a progressive inherited disorder causing persistent infections in the lungs and severe damage to the digestive system. The defective gene that causes the disorder affects the cells that produce mucus, sweat and digestive juices. The underlying mechanism of cystic fibrosis has been found to be an imbalance of fatty acids.
While there is no cure for cystic fibrosis, various treatments can help patients manage symptoms and reduce the risk of complications. Medications are often used to treat and prevent lung infections, while mucus-thinning drugs can help loosen and remove mucus from the lungs and bronchodilators can help keep airways open. Chest physical therapy is often employed to help loosen mucus, making coughing easier. In some cases, surgery to remove nasal polyps to prevent breathing obstruction, oxygen therapy, bowel surgery, an endoscopy, the implantation of a feeding tube or a lung transplant are necessary.
Research suggests cannabis offers several therapeutic benefits to patients. The disorder has been found to be associated with an impaired endocannabinoid system, which in turn causes an imbalance of fatty acids. Studies have shown that with cannabis treatments, the body’s endocannabinoid system will normalize, leading to improvements.
One cannabinoid in particular, THC, has proven to be beneficial. Studies have shown THC to relieve nausea and vomiting and have bronchodilating, anti-inflammatory, anti-diarrheal, and pain-relieving effects.
One animal trial found that treating cystic fibrosis with THC during infancy prevented infertility in males. Another found that regular THC treatments during infancy caused motor activity and anxiety levels to be normal in mice with cystic fibrosis. Additionally, treatments have been shown to help combat the mortality caused by a lack of appetite and subsequent malnutrition in cystic fibrosis patients.
Researchers have suggested cannabinoid treatments for children or young adults may improve food intake and reduce inflammatory exacerbations, thereby helping to improve their health condition.”
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