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Thread: throat cancer

  1. #1
    MedusaGrower is offline Registered+
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    throat cancer

    I would very much like to hear your opinions on the possibility of weed smoking causing throat cancer, as I have become very concerned about this lately.
    I don't know about you all, but when I take a big hit out of a bong, especially a gravity bong, I experience a slight pain in my throat/upper airways. This pain varies according to how much smoke I inhale. So if you just take light puffs on a joint you may not be able to relate to this.
    I have always thought that lung and throat cancer is caused by the carcinogens in tobacco smoke, more specifically the way these carcinogens mutate DNA in the cells that line our throat/lungs. I have always believed that the tobacco smoke is chemically more harmful than marijuana smoke, and I still believe this. Plus, a close examination of the properties of marijuana smoke reveal an element of protection that certain properties of the smoke give -- I'm not a scientist but I understand that the carcinogenesis that occurs in the cells of heavy tobacco smokers is blocked in heavy marijuana smokers by certain ingredients of the smoke.
    BUT.... what about the physical burning of the cells that line our throats caused simply by hot smoke? I have read that chronic irrititation of any internal organ increases the risk of cancer. And I can't think of any more severe case of chronic irritation than taking daily massive gravity bong hits... After a week of bong hits your throat feels pretty sore correct?
    So the big question is whether the cells that form the lining of our throats that get burned to bits by heavy marijuana use will be replaced by cancerous cells?
    I have been smoking weed heavily for 5 years. It has been a cycle of burning and then healing, burning and then healing, burning and then healing, over and over. I will hit the bong several times a day for like 6 days.... experience soreness in my throat, provoking me to completely stop for another 6 days... then when I'm healed up I will start the cycle over again. The pattern varies greatly of course (some months I would only smoke blunts).... but it's safe to say that for 5 years I have been smoking very very heavily and put my throat and lungs through some definite burning.
    Also worth mentioning is that in the past year my throat has been more sensitive to heavy hits than it was 5 years ago. But the difference isn't drastic.
    I would guess that the carcinogens, the chemicals that mutate your DNA play a bigger role in cancer than physical irrititation, but without being more certain I can't continue to smoke weed. I always thought that the immediate pain I get from a big bong hit is the only consequence -- I never thought the size of the hit (how badly you burn your throat) was a factor in cancer risk... always just thought it was the amount of tar that gets into your lungs that mattered. So what do you all think? I can't be the only one who gets a sore throat from bong rips, can I?

    And no, that one study by Dr. Tashkin in 2006 just doesn't put my mind at ease.

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  3. #2
    beachguy in thongs's Avatar
    beachguy in thongs is offline Registered+
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    I've had a similar pain, lately. These cigarettes are killers.

    You may have strained a muscle when you pulled out of the bong.

  4. #3
    RhinoGrowUK is offline Banned
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    You may have strained a muscle when you pulled out of the bong.[/quote]

    lmao

    I think joints will have more chance of giving you throat cancer if any , stick 2 bongs dude !!

  5. #4
    RhinoGrowUK is offline Banned
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    anyone know why my rating thing red ?!!

  6. #5
    angry nomad's Avatar
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    My friend's dad smokes weed every day, never smoked cigs, and got throat cancer, but he also has done a lot of cocaine, and probably other drugs... so who knows what caused it.

    Anyway, if smoking causes you that much pain and discomfort why don't you get a vaporizer, or just eat or drink your THC until you can afford one?

  7. #6
    Storm Crow's Avatar
    Storm Crow is offline Registered+
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    First, get a vaporizer! SOOOO much easier on the lungs! Ready to start reading?

    Cannabis Smoke and Cancer: Assessing the Risk
    Cannabis Smoke and Cancer: Assessing the Risk - NORML

    Cannabis and tobacco smoke are not equally carcinogenic
    Cannabis and tobacco smoke are not equally carcinogenic

    Smoking Marijuana Does Not Cause Lung Cancer
    US: Web: Study: Smoking Marijuana Does Not Cause Lung Cancer

    Blunt Smokers Link Dependence Potential To Nicotine
    Blunt Smokers Link Dependence Potential To Nicotine

    Premiere British Medical Journal Pronounces Marijuana Safer Than Alcohol, Tobacco
    The Cannabis Link

    Why Doesn't Smoking Marijuana Cause Cancer?
    Why Doesn't Smoking Marijuana Cause Cancer?

    Marijuana Smoking Found Non-Carcinogenic
    Medical News: ATS: Marijuana Smoking Found Non-Carcinogenic - in Hematology/Oncology, Lung Cancer from MedPage Today

    Antineoplastic activity of cannabinoids
    Antineoplastic activity of cannabinoids

    Delta(9)-Tetrahydrocannabinol inhibits epithelial growth factor-induced lung cancer cell migration
    Unbound MEDLINE | Delta(9)-Tetrahydrocannabinol inhibits epithelial growth factor-induced lung cancer cell migration in vitro as well as its growth and metastasis in vivo. Journal article

    Smoking Cannabis Does Not Cause Cancer Of Lung or Upper Airways
    CCRMG

    No association between lung cancer and cannabis smoking in large study
    IACM-Bulletin

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  8. #7
    MedusaGrower is offline Registered+
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    angry nomad, is your friend's dad going to die from the cancer?

    so you all think smoking weed can give you throat cancer or not?

  9. #8
    thcbongman's Avatar
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    What causes cancer is such a complex subject, you couldn't even fathom all the variables. One can't determine what makes some people have cancer, and some don't. You can find similarities, but it's not cut and dry in those instances.

    There are people who smokes cigarettes and never get lung cancer. There are people who are healthier than an angel, and they get cancer.

    From my experience with Testicular cancer, you'll either feel nothing, or in the later stages feel unbearable pain you would mistaken for another type of pain. It's not like "oh geez, I feel a little pain when I'm doing this, I have cancer." It's more like "Jesus, I am in so much pain, I have trouble getting around." I thought that pain was injuring myself from working out too much, not from cancer.

    Your pain I doubt is cancer-related. It's great to be concerned about your health, but you shouldn't get overly paranoid about having cancer.

    You should be enjoying life, but if you'd end up one day having cancer, you want to enjoy every minute before you do. You'd know what hell feels like.

    In the meantime, as great ol' Granny here suggests, use a vaporizer =)
    Happiness only real when shared

  10. #9
    Purple Banana's Avatar
    Purple Banana is offline Registered+
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    With cancer, new research (probably included in one of Granny's MANY helpful links!) has been showing a consistent property of cannabis, in that, it has been shown to kill cancerous glioma cells- cancerous cells that arise from the glial cells in the central nervous system- although heavy cannabis users have higher risks of developing bronchitis than non-cannabis or light cannabis users, there has been no correlation between cannabis and any sort of cancer...

    It could be just inflammation of your airways, chest pain from increased heart rate (a natural side effect of cannabis, and sometimes tied into paranoia), or a mild allergy to cannabis. They DO exist. Get it checked out with your doctor, and BE HONEST about your cannabis smoking. Best of luck!

    EDIT: If you smoke cigarettes too, it could be caused by the cigarettes, and slightly inflamed by the cannabis smoke. Try cutting down a bit on cigs, if you do smoke, and stay away from blunts. Bong hits are not necessarily as effective in reducing the damage to your lungs- the best and safest method has been shown through vaporizers and joints; bongs filter out some tar, but also some active THC and cannabinoid compounds. Stick with joints if you can't afford a vape!
    Last edited by Purple Banana; Sep-04-2007 at 21:48.
    Hey man, you got a joint?

    It'd be a lot cooler if you did...

  11. #10
    MedusaGrower is offline Registered+
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    Thanks for the insight. I guess it's not really known wether chronic physical irritiation like throat-burning bong rips causes cancer. But I can't continue to risk it. And no I don't smoke cigs. I looked at the back of my mouth and throat yesterday with a flashlight and I saw red lesions. As of Sept. 4th I have ceased smoking entirely so I can let my throat heal, and when it is finished healing hopefully I will own a vaporizer. Are there less expensive vaporizers that work than the $500+ volcano?

    and if anyone else has anything to add on the subject of whether burning the throat can cause cancer please share because I'm still worried about it. Ive taken a life time's worth of bong hits in the last 5 years.

  12. #11
    birdgirl73's Avatar
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    Throat irritation happens for all sorts of reasons, MedusaGrower, from allergies to illnesses to irritants. If you have red lesions, that could be because you have allergies and drainage, or it could be ulcers from the irritation of smoke. It's highly unlikely that the bong hits you've ingested have actually "burned" your throat. It the smoke were that hot, you couldn't take it into your lungs without great harm. I'm sure the irritation and the nasty components of cannabis smoke--and here I mean the stuff other than THC itself, which is a marvelous anti-inflammatory compound on its own--haven't been tremendously beneficial for your throat. A vaporizer will be a better, healthier way to ingest it.

    If you read the links Granny provided above pretty carefully, you'll find them reassuring. In the tests we know of so far, and there haven't been very many of them, but still, there seems to be convincing evidence that even the heaviest cannabis use doesn't seem to correllate with an increase in throat or lung cancers. They think this is because of the marvelous protective effects of THC and probably CBD, too.

    Talk to a doctor about your throat irritation if it worries you and have it biposied. If you ask an internist or an ear-nose-throat doctor what the real hallmark signs of impending oral cancers are, they'll usually tell you that chronic irritation and ulcerations, and here I mean irritation that has been there for a period of years, ultimately gives rise into patches of leukoplakia, which are slightly hardened, raised, white areas on the tongue and mucous membrane-covered parts of the mouth. Leukoplakia happens a lot to people who smoke pipes and to people who chew tobacco or dip snuff, and it also happens to cigarette and cannabis smokers but is more prevalent in cannabis smokers who also smoke cigarettes. That doesn't mean it can't happen in people who are cannabis smokers alone, but it probably means the THC is working its protective magic on oral tissues, as they've seen in the studies that have been done on lung and head/neck cancers.

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