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Marijuana may increase the risk of suffering from testicular cancer


The University of Southern California (USC) has linked the recreational use of Marijuana, a psychotropic drug prepared with parts of the cannabis plant which principal psychoactive constituent is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) but also contains more than of 400 other compounds, with an increased risk of suffering a number of testicular cancer types [2]. Testicular cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in young men ages 15 to 45 years.

It goes without saying that these findings will raise concerns among those defenders of the use of Cannabis not only as a recreational psychoactive drug but as part of cancer therapies as well. In spite every herb, every plant and every active constituent found on natural sources may have its interactions and contraindications, the findings of these study are based on the results of a survey performed among 163 young men diagnosed with testicular cancer and compared it with that of 292 healthy men of the same age and race/ethnicity. Image left: Cannabis sativa by Stan Dalone under Creative Commons License (CC BY-SA 2.0).


Family: Cannabaceae

Genus: Cannabis

Common name: Cannabis, Marijuana, Marihuana, Hemp



The result of the investigation performed by the Keck school of medicine of the USC and published on the American Cancer Society online journal Cancer, suggests that men with a history of using marijuana were twice as likely to have sub-types of testicular cancer confirming the potential link between marijuana use and testicular cancer [2]. 



CANNABISIn spite the discouraging results of this study for those presently using cannabis as part of some therapies, other studies on cannabis suggest this herb has indeed certain health benefits, and I'm referring to those suggesting how cannabinoids (the active components of Cannabis sativa) and their derivatives can affect the viability and invasiveness of a variety of different cancer cells [4]. Image right: Cannabis sativa by Stan Dalone under Creative Commons License (CC BY-SA 2.0).

Some studies performed on cannabinoids, as the one published by the University of Palermo, Department of Biomedicine and Clinical Neuroscience, suggest that the exploration of molecular mechanisms induced by cannabinoids in cancer cells can contribute to the development of safe and effective treatments in cancer therapy [4]. So finally there is some light at the end of the tunnel and possibly some possibilities to explore a beneficial use of this plant.


[1] Bilateral testicular self-castration due to cannabis abuse: a case report. Ahsaini M, Tazi F, Khalouk A, Lahlaidi K, Bouazzaoui A, Stuurman-Wieringa RE, Elfassi MJ, Farih MH. Department of Urology, Hospital University Center Hassan II, 30000 Fez, Morocco.
[2] Keck School of Medicine of USC News Release
[3] Plant names University of Melbourne