Among the potential health risks associated with smoking marijuana, lung cancer has remained, by and large, at the top of the chronic toker’s concern list for many years. This unrest is mostly due to speculation surrounding the idea that regular marijuana smokers are in danger of suffering the same hazardous perils as long-term users of tobacco. A new study says this is not true.
A new study published in the latest edition of the International Journal of Cancer finds habitual pot smokers are at no greater risk of being inflicted with lung cancer than part-time stoners or even people who don’t smoke at all.
To make this determination, a team of researchers from the United States, Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom set out to explore the records of several studies involving 5,000 participants. What they found was despite the tales of cannabis smoke causing lung cancer, there appeared to be very little reason to suspect weed use led to a greater threat of this disease.
“Results from our pooled analyses provide little evidence for an increased risk of lung cancer among habitual or long-term cannabis smokers,” wrote the study authors.
Incidentally, these findings are consistent with another study published last year in the scientific journal Annals of the American Thoracic Society, which found that while smoking marijuana could lead to an increased risk of chronic bronchitis, it did not lead to lung cancer.
"[H]abitual use of marijuana alone does not appear to lead to significant abnormalities in lung function," wrote lead study author, Dr. Donald Tashkin. "[F]indings from a limited number of well-designed epidemiological studies do not suggest an increased risk of either lung or upper airway cancer from light or moderate use. ... Overall, the risks of pulmonary complications of regular use of marijuana appear to be relatively small and far lower than those of tobacco smoking."
In an accompanying commentary regarding Tashkin’s study, Dr. Mark Ware, with McGill University wrote, “[C]annabis smoking does not seem to increase risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or airway cancers…Efforts to develop cleaner cannabinoid delivery systems can and should continue, but at least for now, [those] who smoke small amounts of cannabis for medical or recreational purposes can breathe a little bit easier."
Mike Adams writes for stoners and smut enthusiasts in HIGH TIMES, Playboy’s The Smoking Jacket and Hustler Magazine. You can follow him on Twitter @adamssoup and on Facebook/mikeadams73.