16 May 2017
Couldn’t call this a positive piece.. but worth reporting as it is published in the Spectator
Here’s the introduction
There are few substances that excite discussion quite as potently as cannabis. Explosive claims about its curative power circulate wildly online, often cited by proponents of medical marijuana. A quick Google search for ‘cannabis cures’ yields anecdotes of miraculous efficacy for every illness imaginable, and particularly for cancer. But, despite the gushing testimonials, this persistent narrative of cannabis as a universal panacea is distinctly at odds with the evidence.
In a review earlier this year of over 10,000 studies, researchers found reliable evidence for three distinct applications of cannabis. First, there is strong evidence that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis, can reduce nausea and vomiting associated with cancer treatments. These anti-emetic properties have been exploited for decades in the clinical management of cancer symptoms.
However, there is a caveat to this. THC is not uniformly well-tolerated and in many instances can exacerbate rather than placate vomiting. As safer and more efficient medications exist, THC-derived clinical compounds tend only to be used for this purpose when other interventions have failed.