WASHINGTON, DC, May 25 2012 - As medical marijuana patients seek improved treatment options, many are discovering the benefits of vaporizers, which effectively eliminate the toxins normally produced by smoke. The patient inhales only the active ingredients needed for treatment, and these smokeless delivery systems are often portable and easy to use.
Medical marijuana is known to treat a wide variety of conditions. As CBS News reports, medical marijuana has proven to be an effective treatment for appetite loss, glaucoma, nausea, pain, arthritis, insomnia, and seizures among others. It can also be effective for treating the side effects of chemotherapy and the symptoms of other serious diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and AIDS.
While proven connections between smoking marijuana as a cause of lung cancer and emphysema are nonexistent, smoking marijuana still can cause many of the same negatives as smoking tobacco, such as coughing and wheezing. Smoking marijuana also produces secondhand smoke and the harmful byproducts such as tar and carbon monoxide.
Many medical marijuana patients want the benefits of marijuana without the harmful effects of smoking. Vaporizers fulfill this need by heating the plant material (cannabis) so active compounds are boiled off into vapor for inhalation without smoke or its toxic byproducts. The vaporizer filters the vapor before inhalation to get the correct vapor to air mixture.
Several studies support the effectiveness of vaporizers for medical marijuana treatment. A study by UCSF published in the Official Journal of the American Academy of Neurology reviewed the effectiveness of a vaporizer that heats to between 180°C (356°F) and 200°C (392°F). The study, which measured carbon monoxide, found almost no exposure to harmful combustion. It also used smaller quantities of the active ingredient verses pill forms.
Another UCSF study of vaporizers published in Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics seems to indicate that patients with chronic pain may experience more relief when cannabinoids are added to an opiates-only treatment. The study showed that patients could reduce the amount of opiates (sustained release morphine or oxycodone) when combined with vaporized cannabis to get this effect.
Vaporizers can provide other health benefits as well. Aromatherapy can help reduce chemical allergies and improve overall health by vaporizing natural herbs such as chamomile. Vaporized herbs can also be added to foods.
The popularity of vaporizers will likely increase as a larger part of the population realizes the benefits they provide.
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