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Benefits of hemp oil

2021-03-24

By MD. Cinthya T.T. Negrão.

Gynecology and Obstetrics specialist

Considering several experimental in vivo and in vitro studies, hemp oil has shown a wide variety of therapeutic applications such as anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory, antipsychotic, anxiolytic, antidepressant, analgesic, antiepileptic and dermatological. All these effects are shown through the modulation of hemp oil to receptors of the endocannabinoid system, including CB1 and CB2, which are found in the central and peripheral nervous systems as well as in immune cells. However, not all of the physiological effects of hemp oil are mediated by cannabinoid receptors. hemp oil has multiple other sources of action such as adenosine and serotonin receptors (VanDolah et al., 2019).

According to a recent systematic review on the medical uses of hemp oil, quality evidence was found to support its use in inflammatory diseases, chronic pain and spasticity, particularly in the context of opioid abuse, not only for its efficacy but also for its diverse potential and safety profile through the use of transdermal patches, as in rheumatoid arthritis. Regulation of anxiety and fear states as well as panic and insomnia states and psychiatric conditions such as schizophrenia. Studies have been published showing its benefit in people who want to quit smoking and other types of addiction through the reduction of the activity of the brain amygdala that modulates the regulation of dopamine and serotonin. As mentioned above, it has dermatological properties mainly in people with acne. Studies are being carried out in which doctors want to verify the potential benefits of hemp oil for the treatment of neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s, since the neuroprotective, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effect of cannabidiol has been demonstrated. This led to the development of other studies where they want to demonstrate the potential benefits of hemp oil for the treatment of migraine, fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome and ulcerative colitis. Studies indicate that patients with Parkinson’s disease who consume hemp oil in a controlled manner show better quality of life indices than those who do not consume it. In June 2018, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approved Epidiolex, a purified hemp oil oral solution that was shown to reduce the frequency of seizures versus placebo in patients with Dravet and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. Research in these conditions is the most promising within the clinical trials that have been carried out with hemp oil, thus allowing to know its efficacy, safety and adverse effects. With all this, more policies need to be developed with the aim of expanding access to hemp oil (Blessing et al., 2015) (McGuire et al., 2018) (Karl et al., 2017) (VanDolah et al., 2019).

One of the most interesting fields in which cannabis has been used has been gynecological and obstetric. The use of cannabis in diseases or conditions of this type dates from the medieval era and its extensive use in ancient and modern Europe. In the gynecological aspect it is used to treat menstrual pain or also called dysmenorrhea, menstrual irregularities, pain during sexual intercourse or dyspareunia, urogenital tract infections, decreased libido or sexual appetite as well as symptoms of menopause. On the other hand, in the obstetric aspect, it was used for the treatment of missed abortion and postpartum hemorrhage. But it is not until today, with the knowledge of the endocannabinoid system, that its physiological basis could be determined. Chronic pelvic pain affects approximately 15% of all women of reproductive age. The endocannabinoid system is a potential pharmacological focus for pelvic pain since cannabinoid receptors are expressed in a very high quantity in the uterus, in addition to other peripheral organs and nerve endings. In 2020, a study with 240 patients was published where it was evidenced that at least a quarter of the patients used cannabis regularly as adjunctive therapy to conventional anti-inflammatory analgesics, reported a considerable decrease in symptoms and minimal adverse events. Regarding sexual desire, in 2017 a pilot study was conducted and showed that cannabis use activates a brain area linked to vision that increases sexual stimulation in patients who do not present an elevation of the hormone prolactin (Russo, 2002) ( Carrubba et al., 2020) (Androvicova et al., 2017).

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