Little research exists about the impact of marijuana on blood pressure and cardiovascular disease. One large study found no link between marijuana and cardiovascular disease. However, other studies found that chest pain occurred sooner in people exposed to marijuana and that the drug may increase the risk of a heart attack.
Blood pressure refers to the force of blood in your arteries as it is pumped by your heart. A blood pressure reading consists of two stacked numbers. The top number is your systolic blood pressure, which is the amount of pressure when your heart is contracting. The lower number is diastolic blood pressure, which is the pressure between heartbeats. Normal blood pressure is 120/80 or lower.
High Blood Pressure Risks
Because marijuana can increase blood pressure and heart rate, it is important to be careful — especially if you have high blood pressure already. Although the link between marijuana and cardiovascular complications is unclear, cardiovascular problems like stroke can be devastating. It is important to consult your doctor about marijuana use if you have high blood pressure or other cardiovascular disease risk factors.
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Sidney, Stephen. “Cardiovascular consequences of marijuana use.” Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, November 2002. Accessed November 15, 2020.
“Cannabis research is in its early stages and BGU is at the forefront of evaluating clinical use based on scientific studies,” said Doug Seserman, chief executive officer of American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.
The BGU researchers theorised that the relief from pain, the indication for prescription cannabis in most patients, may also have contributed to a reduction in blood pressure.
Patients were evaluated using 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring, ECG, blood tests, and body measurements — both before and three months after initiating cannabis therapy.
The study, published in the ‘European Journal of Internal Medicine’, is the first of its kind to focus on the effect of cannabis on blood pressure, heart rate, and metabolic parameters in adults 60 and above with hypertension.
The findings of a new study by researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) and its affiliated Soroka University Medical Center, suggests that medical cannabis may help in reducing blood pressure in older adults.
“This new study is one of several that has been published recently by BGU on the medicinal benefits of cannabis,” concluded Seserman.
In the study, researchers found a significant reduction in 24-hour systolic and diastolic blood pressure values, with the lowest point occurring three hours after ingesting cannabis either orally via oil extracts or by smoking. Patients showed reductions in blood pressure in both daytime and nighttime, with more significant changes at night.
About American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
Additional researchers who participated in the study include: Prof. Victor Novack, director of the BGU-Soroka Cannabis Clinical Research Institute and BGU-Soroka Clinical Research Center and Research Authority; Prof. Yosef Haviv, director of the Department of Nephrology at Soroka; Prof. Merav Leiba, Prof. Adi Leiba and Dr. Larisa Ryvo of the Assuta Ashdod Academic Medical Center.
The BGU researchers theorize that the relief from pain, the indication for prescription cannabis in most patients, may also have contributed to a reduction in blood pressure.
“Older adults are the fastest growing group of medical cannabis users, yet evidence on cardiovascular safety for this population is scarce,” says Dr. Ran Abuhasira of the BGU Faculty of Health Sciences, one of Israel’s leading medical faculties, and the BGU-Soroka Cannabis Clinical Research Institute. “This study is part of our ongoing effort to provide clinical research on the actual physiological effects of cannabis over time.”
Beer-Sheva, Israel. February 8, 2021 – A new discovery by researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) and its affiliated Soroka University Medical Center shows that medical cannabis may reduce blood pressure in older adults.
American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (AABGU) plays a vital role in sustaining David Ben-Gurion’s vision: creating a world-class institution of education and research in the Israeli desert, nurturing the Negev community and sharing the University’s expertise locally and around the globe. Activities include showcasing BGU’s academic excellence and cutting-edge research through educational programs, events and informative communications. AABGU’s main purpose is to support Ben-Gurion’s vision and the university that bears his name by creating a community of Americans committed to improving the world tomorrow from the heart of the Israeli desert today. For more information visit http://www. aabgu. org.
“Cannabis research is in its early stages and BGU is at the forefront of evaluating clinical use based on scientific studies,” says Doug Seserman, chief executive officer of American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. “This new study is one of several that has been published recently by BGU on the medicinal benefits of cannabis.”