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Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS) causes patients to suffer from severe abdominal pain and nausea while vomiting as often as twelve times per hour. This is a rare disorder that was identified through an Australian study in 2004. Hyperemesis is defined as “excessive vomiting,” and CHS can only be diagnosed if the patient has used marijuana regularly for a long period of time. Essentially, excessive cannabis use causes Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome.

It is strange for a condition that lists nausea, vomiting, and pain as symptoms to be caused by a medicinal plant that is known to provide relief from all of those exact symptoms in patients suffering from other debilitating medical conditions. About half of the test subjects in a study conducted by Dr. Douglas Simonetto, in 2012, reported taking several extremely hot showers per day to alleviate the severity of symptoms.

Characteristics of the syndrome include:

  • Severe cyclic nausea and vomiting
  • Symptoms stop when marijuana use stops
  • Symptom relief from hot shower or bath
  • Abdominal pain
  • Minimum weekly use of marijuana

It is not yet known exactly what causes this negative reaction in excessive marijuana users. Perhaps there could be a blockage or a proliferation of cannabinoids in the body, like tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD), or one of the 84+ others occurring naturally in cannabis plants.

Maybe the hefty marijuana use negatively effects the cannabinoid receptors in the brain, causing these symptoms. It could also have something to do with the potency of marijuana today since there is no record of the condition prior to 2004. More studies will have to be done on this subject now that marijuana prohibition is slowly fading into the past.

Terminating cannabis use has successfully eliminated all symptoms of Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome in all subjects. This means that if you smoke copious amounts of marijuana multiple times per day for years, and one day you develop abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and the uncontrollable urge to take extremely hot showers or baths, you may have given yourself CHS. To cure your symptoms, stop smoking marijuana.


photo credit: rappingmanual
Sources: ViceMayo Clinic, Wikipedia

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