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Medical Marijuana and Graves Disease

What Is Graves Disease?

  Graves disease is an autoimmune disorder that results in hypothyroidism, or over production of thyroid hormones in the body. Among all the possible reasons for hyperactivity within the thyroid, Graves Disease is the most common cause. Although not genetically inherited, a family history of the disease does appear to be a risk factor in developing the disease. Graves Disease can affect both males and females at any age; however, it is most common among women between the ages of 20 and 40. The thyroid gland is an important component of the endocrine system. Located just below the voice box in the front of the neck, the thyroid gland is responsible for releasing the hormones tyroxine (T4) and thriiodothyronine (T3). These hormones, in turn, control body metabolism which is responsible for regulating weight, mood, and both mental and physical energy levels. Because the thyroid has such an overall effect on the body, symptoms of Graves Disease can be varied, but may include fatigue, anxiety and difficulty concentrating as well as eye irritation, double vision and even protruding eyeballs. Increased appetite, insomnia, restlessness and muscle weakness are also signs of Graves Disease as are weight loss, menstrual irregularities in women, and breast enlargement in men. Conventional treatment methods for someone who suffers from Graves Disease are aimed at stopping the over production of thyroid hormone and reducing, or blocking, the negative effects of the hormone on the body. Radioactive iodine therapy is commonly prescribed. The thyroid needs iodine in order to produce hormones. By ingesting radioactive iodine, the thyroid absorbs the radioactive iodine which eventually destroys the overactive thyroid cells. Anti-thyroid medications work in a similar fashion by interfering with the thyroid’s ability to use iodine, thereby preventing it from producing hormones. Beta blocker may also be used to help block the effects of the hormone on the body. In serious cases, surgery may be warranted to remove the thyroid. Graves disease is an autoimmune disorder that results in hypothyroidism, or over production of thyroid hormones in the body. Among all the possible reasons for hyperactivity within the thyroid, Graves Disease is the most common cause. Although not genetically inherited, a family history of the disease does appear to be a risk factor in developing the disease. Graves Disease can affect both males and females at any age; however, it is most common among women between the ages of 20 and 40. The thyroid gland is an important component of the endocrine system. Located just below the voice box in the front of the neck, the thyroid gland is responsible for releasing the hormones tyroxine (T4) and thriiodothyronine (T3). These hormones, in turn, control body metabolism which is responsible for regulating weight, mood, and both mental and physical energy levels. Because the thyroid has such an overall effect on the body, symptoms of Graves Disease can be varied, but may include fatigue, anxiety and difficulty concentrating as well as eye irritation, double vision and even protruding eyeballs. Increased appetite, insomnia, restlessness and muscle weakness are also signs of Graves Disease as are weight loss, menstrual irregularities in women, and breast enlargement in men. Conventional treatment methods for someone who suffers from Graves Disease are aimed at stopping the over production of thyroid hormone and reducing, or blocking, the negative effects of the hormone on the body. Radioactive iodine therapy is commonly prescribed. The thyroid needs iodine in order to produce hormones. By ingesting radioactive iodine, the thyroid absorbs the radioactive iodine which eventually destroys the overactive thyroid cells. Anti-thyroid medications work in a similar fashion by interfering with the thyroid’s ability to use iodine, thereby preventing it from producing hormones. Beta blocker may also be used to help block the effects of the hormone on the body. In serious cases, surgery may be warranted to remove the thyroid.  

Medical Marijuana and Graves Disease

Medical Marijuana and Graves Disease
As with many medical conditions or treatments, the use of conventionally prescribed drugs often comes with potentially serious side effects as well. In the case of Graves Disease, radioiodine therapy may cause an increase in the eye related symptoms of the disease, as well as tenderness in your neck. Anti-thyroid drugs can cause joint pain, liver failure or a decrease in the production of white blood cells that are critical for fighting disease. Beta blockers can cause an asthma attack in asthma patients as well as interfere with the management of diabetes.
While medical marijuana has not been shown to directly reduce the production of thyroid hormones, it can certainly be used as a safer alternative to treat many of the symptoms associated with Graves Disease. Medical marijuana, for example, has a long history as a viable treatment for loss of appetite, insomnia and fatigue as well as for pain and anxiety. In addition, medical marijuana does not cause many of the serious side effects associated with traditional Grave Disease treatments.
Marijuana and Graves Disease: Clinical Evidence
For Graves Disease patients who are suffering from loss of appetite or weight loss as a result of the disease, medical marijuana may be an excellent option. Studies have repeatedly shown the effectiveness of medical marijuana as an appetite stimulant. Cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy have been studied using medical marijuana with excellent results showing that medical marijuana does work to activate the appetite. Although accepted as a valid anti-stress, anti-anxiety treatment for centuries, medical marijuana has also recently been shown in clinical trials to reduce anxiety levels on patients suffering from anxiety.
Along with acting as an appetitive stimulant and anti-anxiety treatment, medical marijuana can be used to help with any pain related to Graves Disease. Conventional treatments often leads to painful side-effects such as joint pain. Studies have shown that not only does medical marijuana significantly decrease pain levels, but it can also work to reduce a patient’s dependence on opiate based pain medications that are commonly prescribed for pain. By reducing the patient’s dependence on opiate based pain medications, the patient is at less risk for overdose, dependence or addiction.

Medical Marijuana and Graves Disease

As with many medical conditions or treatments, the use of conventionally prescribed drugs often comes with potentially serious side effects as well. In the case of Graves Disease, radioiodine therapy may cause an increase in the eye related symptoms of the disease, as well as tenderness in your neck. Anti-thyroid drugs can cause joint pain, liver failure or a decrease in the production of white blood cells that are critical for fighting disease. Beta blockers can cause an asthma attack in asthma patients as well as interfere with the management of diabetes.While medical marijuana has not been shown to directly reduce the production of thyroid hormones, it can certainly be used as a safer alternative to treat many of the symptoms associated with Graves Disease. Medical marijuana, for example, has a long history as a viable treatment for loss of appetite, insomnia and fatigue as well as for pain and anxiety. In addition, medical marijuana does not cause many of the serious side effects associated with traditional Grave Disease treatments.

Marijuana and Graves Disease: Clinical Evidence

For Graves Disease patients who are suffering from loss of appetite or weight loss as a result of the disease, medical marijuana may be an excellent option. Studies have repeatedly shown the effectiveness of medical marijuana as an appetite stimulant. Cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy have been studied using medical marijuana with excellent results showing that medical marijuana does work to activate the appetite. Although accepted as a valid anti-stress, anti-anxiety treatment for centuries, medical marijuana has also recently been shown in clinical trials to reduce anxiety levels on patients suffering from anxiety.

Along with acting as an appetitive stimulant and anti-anxiety treatment, medical marijuana can be used to help with any pain related to Graves Disease. Conventional treatments often leads to painful side-effects such as joint pain. Studies have shown that not only does medical marijuana significantly decrease pain levels, but it can also work to reduce a patient’s dependence on opiate based pain medications that are commonly prescribed for pain. By reducing the patient’s dependence on opiate based pain medications, the patient is at less risk for overdose, dependence or addiction.

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