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Cannabis bigger cancer risk than cigarettes: study

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Cannabis bigger cancer risk than cigarettes: study

Old 01-29-08, 08:53 AM
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Cannabis bigger cancer risk than cigarettes: study

This study is pretty contrary to the usual "marijuana is perfectly safe" mantra. Do note at the end that it is a rather small study. It at least warrants a larger study, with control groups, etc, and may serve as a point of caution in the meantime.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080129/...Zp5CNjPIas0NUE
Cannabis bigger cancer risk than cigarettes: study Tue Jan 29, 4:44 AM ET



HONG KONG (Reuters) - Smoking a joint is equivalent to 20 cigarettes in terms of lung cancer risk, scientists in New Zealand have found, as they warned of an "epidemic" of lung cancers linked to cannabis.

Studies in the past have demonstrated that cannabis can cause cancer, but few have established a strong link between cannabis use and the actual incidence of lung cancer.

In an article published in the European Respiratory Journal, the scientists said cannabis could be expected to harm the airways more than tobacco as its smoke contained twice the level of carcinogens, such as polyaromatic hydrocarbons, compared with tobacco cigarettes.

The method of smoking also increases the risk, since joints are typically smoked without a proper filter and almost to the very tip, which increases the amount of smoke inhaled. The cannabis smoker inhales more deeply and for longer, facilitating the deposition of carcinogens in the airways.

"Cannabis smokers end up with five times more carbon monoxide in their bloodstream (than tobacco smokers)," team leader Richard Beasley, at the Medical Research Institute of New Zealand, said in a telephone interview.

"There are higher concentrations of carcinogens in cannabis smoke ... what is intriguing to us is there is so little work done on cannabis when there is so much done on tobacco."

The researchers interviewed 79 lung cancer patients and sought to identify the main risk factors for the disease, such as smoking, family history and occupation. The patients were questioned about alcohol and cannabis consumption.

In this high-exposure group, lung cancer risk rose by 5.7 times for patients who smoked more than a joint a day for 10 years, or two joints a day for 5 years, after adjusting for other variables, including cigarette smoking.

"While our study covers a relatively small group, it shows clearly that long-term cannabis smoking increases lung cancer risk," wrote Beaseley.

"Cannabis use could already be responsible for one in 20 lung cancers diagnosed in New Zealand," he added.

"In the near future we may see an 'epidemic' of lung cancers connected with this new carcinogen. And the future risk probably applies to many other countries, where increasing use of cannabis among young adults and adolescents is becoming a major public health problem."

Old 01-29-08, 09:59 AM
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I will wait for KillerCannibus' opinion...oh wait...
Old 01-29-08, 10:14 AM
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So is it saying if you smoke 1 or 2 joints a day it increases your risk 5 times more than regular cigarette smoking, or over non-smokers?
Old 01-29-08, 10:24 AM
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I'm not sure why anyone thought it wouldn't cause cancer. smoking in any kind of carbon monoxcide can't be good for you
Old 01-29-08, 10:25 AM
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Kind of like too much booze ruining your liver. I still think weed should be legalized.
Old 01-29-08, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Venusian
I'm not sure why anyone thought it wouldn't cause cancer. smoking in any kind of carbon monoxcide can't be good for you
Also, there's the way cigarette smokers typically puff in, puff out, whereas pot smokers typically hold it in their lungs for longer, allowing more pollutants into the bloodstream.

How many typically everyday items would cause the same amount of damage though? I'm sure it can't be much more.
Old 01-29-08, 10:34 AM
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I don't believe this study. I still feel smoking weed is safer for you than smoking cigarettes or drinking alcohol. For one you can't OD from smoking to much weed like you can from drinking to much alcohol. Marijuana has been proven to help people with certain conditions, you can't say that about alcohol or cigarettes.
Old 01-29-08, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by acubfaninmd
I don't believe this study. I still feel smoking weed is safer for you than smoking cigarettes or drinking alcohol. For one you can't OD from smoking to much weed like you can from drinking to much alcohol. Marijuana has been proven to help people with certain conditions, you can't say that about alcohol or cigarettes.
Those are all random points that have nothing to do with pot causing cancer. (besides, alcohol has been proven to have benefits and you can't OD from cigarettes)
Old 01-29-08, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by LiquidSky
Kind of like too much booze ruining your liver. I still think weed should be legalized.
I think it's stupid that booze is legal and pot isn't.
Old 01-29-08, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Venusian
I'm not sure why anyone thought it wouldn't cause cancer. smoking in any kind of carbon monoxcide can't be good for you
Yeah.

I think most who say it is "perfectly safe," are referring to the lack of an OD aspect to pot usage, not any long-term consequences of use.
Old 01-29-08, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by starman9000
(besides, alcohol has been proven to have benefits and you can't OD from cigarettes)

You can die from nicotine poisoning.....
Old 01-29-08, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Kittydreamer
I think it's stupid that booze is legal and pot isn't.


Old 01-29-08, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by spainlinx0
So is it saying if you smoke 1 or 2 joints a day it increases your risk 5 times more than regular cigarette smoking, or over non-smokers?
Well the authors are saying 1-2 joints/day = 1-2 packs per day. People who smoke (cigarettes) in the range have a large increase in cancer risk.

If you smoke both joints and cigs, the risk are (more or less) additive
Old 01-29-08, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Minor Threat
You can die from nicotine poisoning.....
Well you can die from THC poisoning too, but like with cigarettes, you aren't going to do it from smoking.
Old 01-29-08, 11:03 AM
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Previous studies have shown no link between marijuana use and cancer. I do agree with the OP that it would be nice to have a series of comprehensive studies on this, but good luck with that happening in your lifetime.
Old 01-29-08, 11:04 AM
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Originally Posted by JasonF
Previous studies have shown no link between marijuana use and cancer. I do agree with the OP that it would be nice to have a series of comprehensive studies on this, but good luck with that happening in your lifetime.
from the article
Studies in the past have demonstrated that cannabis can cause cancer
Old 01-29-08, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by JasonF
Previous studies have shown no link between marijuana use and cancer.
Previous studies said that AIDS was caused by homosexual behavior.

Previous studies say alot of things Jason.
Old 01-29-08, 11:07 AM
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Originally Posted by JasonF
Previous studies have shown no link between marijuana use and reggae.
FALSE.
Old 01-29-08, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by starman9000
Well you can die from THC poisoning too, but like with cigarettes, you aren't going to do it from smoking.

Oh well, I guess you have convinced me it's safe to smoke now.....


Old 01-29-08, 11:09 AM
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If marijuana were legal, consumption via vaporizers or food would be easier and more popular - negating any cancer risks
Old 01-29-08, 11:13 AM
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I thought this was strongly suspected in the '70s and pretty much accepted as a known in the '80s. Is this the first study to actually follow smokers and measure the results?
Old 01-29-08, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by acubfaninmd
I don't believe this study. I still feel smoking weed is safer for you than smoking cigarettes or drinking alcohol. For one you can't OD from smoking to much weed like you can from drinking to much alcohol. Marijuana has been proven to help people with certain conditions, you can't say that about alcohol or cigarettes.



Way to argue against he study with completely unrelated points! Are you high?
Old 01-29-08, 11:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Red Dog
Yeah.

I think most who say it is "perfectly safe," are referring to the lack of an OD aspect to pot usage, not any long-term consequences of use.
Some of which include memory impairment.
Old 01-29-08, 11:22 AM
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I guess if you were chronic and had a pack a day green leaf habit, it could be serious. For the part-timers, no biggie.
Old 01-29-08, 11:22 AM
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I didn't think this was anything new. I've seen these things said before. I don't know why anyone would think inhaling (any kind of) smoke into your lungs and holding it there wouldn't increase your risk of lung cancer.

But if that were a reason for making marijuana illegal (which it isn't), it would also be a reason for making tobacco illegal. People have the right to assume risks as long as they don't violate anyone else's rights.

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