Marijuana & your lungs

“Early on, when our research appeared as if there would be a negative impact on lung health, I was opposed to legalization because I thought it would lead to increased use and that would lead to increased health effects,” Tashkin says. “But at this point, I’d be in favor of legalization. I wouldn’t encourage anybody to smoke any substances. But I don’t think it should be stigmatized as an illegal substance. Tobacco smoking causes far more harm. And in terms of an intoxicant, alcohol causes far more harm.” – Dr. Tashkin

THC has been found to reduce tumor growth in common lung cancer by 50 percent and to significantly reduce the ability of the cancer to spread, say researchers at Harvard University, who tested the chemical in both lab and mouse studies. The researchers suggest that THC might be used in a targeted fashion to treat lung cancer. (study)

Although the researchers do not know why THC inhibits tumor growth, they say the substance could be activating molecules that arrest the cell cycle. They speculate that THC may also interfere with angiogenesis and vascularization, which promotes cancer growth.

In 2006, Donald Tashkin, M.D., of the University of California in Los Angeles, presented the results of his study,”Marijuana Use and Lung Cancer: Results of a Case-Control Study”.

Tashkin found that smoking marijuana does not appear to increase the risk of lung cancer or head-and-neck malignancies, even among heavy users. The more tobacco a person smoked, the greater their risk of developing lung cancer and other cancers of the head and neck. But people who smoked more marijuana were not at increased risk compared with people who smoked less and people who didn’t smoke at all. Study

Even very heavy, long-term marijuana users who had smoked more than 22,000 joints over a lifetime seemed to have no greater risk than infrequent marijuana users or nonusers.

The findings surprised the study’s researchers, who expected to see an increase in cancer among people who smoked marijuana regularly in their youth.

“We know that there are as many or more carcinogens and co-carcinogens in marijuana smoke as in cigarettes,” researcher Donald Tashkin, MD, of UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine tells WebMD. “But we did not find any evidence for an increase in cancer risk for even heavy marijuana smoking.” Carcinogens are substances that cause cancer.

Marijuana use was associated with cancer risk ratios below 1.0, indicating that a history of pot smoking had no effect on the risk for respiratory cancers. In contrast, tobacco smoking had a 21-fold risk for cancer.  Tashkin concluded, “It’s possible that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in marijuana smoke may encourage apoptosis, or programmed cell death, causing cells to die off before they have a chance to undergo malignant transformation”. Study

The new findings “were against our expectations,” said Donald Tashkin of the University of California at Los Angeles, a pulmonologist who has studied marijuana for 30 years.

“We hypothesized that there would be a positive association between marijuana use and lung cancer, and that the association would be more positive with heavier use,” he said. “What we found instead was no association at all, and even a suggestion of some protective effect.”

Similar findings on the safety of smoked marijuana were released in April 2009 by the Vancouver Burden of Obstructive Lung Disease Research Group. The study presents that smoking both tobacco and marijuana synergistically increased the risk of respiratory symptoms and COPD. Smoking only marijuana, however, was not associated with an increased risk of respiratory symptoms of COPD. Study

In a related commentary, Dr. Donald Tashkin writes that  “the findings — add to the limited evidence of an association between marijuana use and COPD because [the] study focuses on an older population (aged 40 or older) that is at greater risk of COPD.”  revious studies have failed to find an additive effect of marijuana and tobacco on either chronic respiratory symptoms or abnormal lung function in younger smokers. Dr. Tashkin states that “we can be close to concluding that marijuana smoking by itself does not lead to COPD.””. Source

Here is Dr. Tashkin discussing the findings:

See Also: Top anti-drug researcher changes his mind, says legalize marijuana

80 thoughts on “Marijuana & your lungs

  1. Pingback: Drug use? (no need for specifics) - Page 4 - Cobalt SS Network

    • Yes, it has you wouldnt know whether it is or is not seeing as you have not stopped smoking in 15 years. Most the information on this website is false and very misleading. Shit like this is why people think pot heads are stupid. We make stupid false claims about marijuana benefits that are simply not true. Burning and inhaling and form of smoke from any plant is not healthy and negatively impacts the lungs. The risk of cancer between a non smoker and a marijuana smoker is certainly increased as any real studies will show you. Kinda ridiculous how pot heads try to justify tthere habit. Smoking is bad for you, but if you enjoy is do it just dont try to justify it with false facts. P.S I am a heavy smoker and pro legalization just found these website and cannot believe all the false information, it makes weed sound like a miracle cure, which it is not


      • Kyle, I am 62 and was diagnosed with emphysema 6 years ago it was not a big surprise because it runs in my family and I was a very foolish kid and smoked cigarettes for 10 years as a kid, my poor young lungs. I stopped smoking cigarettes and changed to pot when I grew up. I’ve been vaping pot for the last 2 years and last month I went for a new lung function test and last week went for the follow-up appointment with my primary care and surprise, surprise no more emphysema. I had been using two different inhalers occasionally over the last 6 years and never felt that they helped, no more inhalers for me. Back in the 70’s when I was 20ish my uncle that was 21ish at the time, who was a severe asthmatic was always saying that he was smoking pot because it allowed him to breathe easier, we all thought it was just an excuse for him to be high all the time, now I realize he was telling the truth whether or not he knew it at the time.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I smoked cigarettes & MJ for 26 years and was diagnosed with emphysema. I quit smoking tobacco products 8 1/2 years ago. I have a different doctor now and this one can’t find anything wrong with my lungs. Haven’t had an asthma attack or bronchitis since I gave up tobacco either.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I am 50 years old ,I’ve had 5 pregnancy’s from age 21 to 30 and gave birth to 5 perfect babies.when pregnant I gave up,,, cigarettes ,alcohol,salt, medicines like cough syrup & aspirin, caffeine,and anything else that wasn’t good during a pregnancy…everything except marijuana ….all babies delivered without complications, Breastfeed till first birthdays…they were never sick or sickly,they did not lose their first teeth till around 8 years old,all home school for a spell, oldest started public school in 7th grade,only the baby went to all grades starting with kindergarten all Graduated from High School, all taking turns being on the Honor Roll at one time or another, never at the same time of course, little buggers, but I only wanted them to try their best, not be robots…I’m very Proud of All of them,Not to say they’re Angels by far…lol…but the facts remain the same…Marijuana is safe, It is helpful in so many ways for so many aliments…call me if you want more information in this area I’m always available ….Jeanne M Knight….207-782-6378… 469 Skillings corner rd, Auburn,Maine 04210

    Liked by 4 people

    • How dare you only breastfeed for only a year. Two years helps with brain and immune system development. Doesnt hurt ro do longer.
      Anyways, congrats on good babies.


      • Ughhh how dare u speak up on another’s woman’s breast.some people don’t enjoy having their tits sucked into oblivion that’s when they are allowed to drink whole milk.I can’t stand a judgemental parent.u let yo kids suck on u till the bite the shit outta u.others prefer to let their child grow the fuck up.

        Liked by 1 person

        • True shit leave others alone and what they do , she made that choice amd it worked , congrats to ur wonderfull babies , im 16 years old and i know none about banies and shit but i know whats what in life , let the kids grow up in the best way the ,Mother want them to grow up


    • I would love to chat with you about your successful pregnancies and marijuana use! Very reassuring. Please email me sometime; I will leave you my contact info.


  4. I also smoked when I was pregnant; it was the happiest time of my life – never sick and had perfect baby at 30. I am now 53, have smoked all these years and doing fine. I do worry sometimes about getting a lung mass, but glad to see these claims.

    Keep on tokin’

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I use to be on Many drugs the Doctors thought would help, they did . they clean out my bank account job well done. and a old tired Doctor put me on cannabis ended my problems I suffered from seizures black outs and a few other things as well not to mention all the side effects. I was house bound for 6 years Never left the house because of the meds I was taking , now I am way better I only use at night before bed time , I sleep great,i feel great when i wake up for anyone to say that this is a bad plant is totally wrong , it’s just the big pharmaceutical companies are not making any money off of it when I went to cannabis they lost over a thousand dollars per month from me what a shame . I smoke it, vaporize it, which is the best . but most of all I know what i am putting into my body is all natural I am in better health then i was on all the meds Fact

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I disagree with a lot of this. If you look at the rate of tar that accumulates in pipe from Marijuana compared to Cigarettes you will see that Marijuana Tar builds up 3 – 4 times faster than cigarettes. No research needed to make a conclusion that the tar in your lungs are also increasing at the rapid pace of comparison. Imagine combining both!!!!

    If anything doctors and researchers should legalize THC!!! and find & promote other ways to get people stoned recreationally. Vaporizers should be studied more and a vapor pipe that decreases tar to 0% should be advertised in television, and advertisments of healthy ways to smoke should be encouraged in the media. LETS START NOW!!!!


    • What you say about tar is right, and completely rational, but dr tashkin found that for some reason, even though feasibly, the tar should cause damage to the lungs, it didn’t. Tashkin found that while some constituents in the smoke may have been hurting the lungs, the healing effects of other constituents were simultaneously healing and repairing them.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Marijuana is a bronchial dilater tobacco is a bronchial constrictor there for you cough up most of tar from marijuana tobacco tar lingers In the lungs and is harder to get out do to the constricting effect.


    • Hi, good day to all of you! … they will not sell this over the counter because the big pharma will lose business. It is all conspiracy by the govt and big pharma. Where would they get their profits if majority of the people are using natural medicine…

      get stoned… get healthy… 🙂


  7. I am bipolar and am a breast cancer survivor, I have been smoking weed for 46 years. It helps me sleep, relieves nausea, helps my appetite, my mood, and my anxiety. I have been cancer free since 1999.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. hi,
    Im from India, my father is suffering from lungs cancer. can you please guide from where can i get cannabis.



    • Shafin – In India, Cannabis (Bhang) is illegal, but legal and/or tolerated (for personal use in small quantity) in several states such as West Bengal, Bihar, Orissa Tripura, and the North East. I hope you can find it there. ~Dennis

      Liked by 1 person

    • Checkout jeff waters on facebook he cured himself of COPD from hospital bed to campaigning for legalization..he could help with dosages and other stuff you should know and i have a friend who lived in india i will ask her if she has a contact


  9. My mother has been diagnosed with Lung Cancer last month and we’re seeking best treatment for her. Now I’m against anything that has to do with chemotherapy. .and i feel she should do natural healing such as cannabinoid and other holistic treatment. My question is besides my selfish feelings, do you think going natural will be a good alternative vs chemotherapy


    • Search youtube for rick simpson medical oil
      You will find so many elderly people as well as all ages and their journeys and recoveries all documented, im sure you will see its the way to go
      Good luck


  10. I am 16 years of age. I had my first puff of Cannabis when I was 12. Ever since November of 2015, I have become a more frequent smoker. My grades have not gone down, they actually improved. I have been suffering from depression for years and now it is basically gone. I am an athlete and it improved my lung function. A lot of things people say about Cannabis is mostly false. This plant is a solution to many problems. Only if you are responsible with it. Like with all substances, you have to be responsible with it. This can be the solution to most to all problems in the world.


  11. Try clicking on the ‘sources’ …. it’s ok to be pro thc just be honest it has positive and negative effects…. a simple google search will lead u to actual sourced findings.
    Weed is a plant. Burning plants and inhaling them causes copd. This movement is very reminiscent of truthers (another astounding evidence denial cult )


  12. I’ve always thought that smoking marijuana would increase your chances of lung cancer, so I’m really surprised to see that that’s not the case. Paired with it’s ability to impair cancerous growth, I think it makes for a viable treatment option for many patients. Thank you for sharing!


  13. Please if you can get back with me this is very important to our family my dad has scarring of the lungs I had just started giving him the oil and I was wondering how long or if their studies on that the oil is scarring of the lungs and how long would that be able to repair itself if that is a true fact that it is going to help scarring of the lungs. Or should I give them the paper to smoke that way it gets in the lungs faster .


    • Very interesting question. I wonder about vaporizing too – but i do think you’re on to something with the direct application to the lungs. Perhaps that pus the oil. I’ll see if Dennis the biochemist has anything to add…


  14. My girlfriend has lung cancer and I’m trying to find a way so that she can live longer, the doctors give her a year and a half to live, she’s only 15 and she deserves a longer life


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