According to the Lupus Foundation of America, approximately 1.5 million Americans are suffering from this illness, and at least five million people in the world live with some kind of lupus. This disease is a chronic condition that features a disruption of the immune response that leads antibodies to react attacking organs and various systems of the body, causing pain and inflammation. Genetic, environmental, and hormonal factors are frequently associated with lupus, although the cause of this disease is still unknown. Lupus affects many parts of the body and may produce several symptoms: pain, vasculitis, arthritis, skin disorders, hair loss or alopecia, conditions affecting the heart, lungs, and kidney, neurocognitive disorders, and seizures. 9 every 10 lupus patients are women. The first symptoms include extreme fatigue, rashes or skin disorders, and joint pain. Still, the early signs vary significantly from one person to another. Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is the most common type of lupus. Cutaneous lupus is a form of lupus that only affects the skin. Drug-induced lupus is caused by certain medications, and neonatal lupus affects babies of women who suffer from this disease.
Lupus treatment depends on the degree of severity and the clinical expressions of the disease. Sometimes, patients are given anti-inflammatory drugs in high doses, as well as antimalarial and immunomodulatory drugs. In more severe cases, where the life of the patients is at risk, doctors indicate immunosuppressants like corticosteroids and cytotoxic agents. Both approaches carry side effects affecting the bowel, the kidney, and the eyes.
Therapeutic Effects of Cannabis
The endocannabinoid system plays a key role in many physiological and pathological conditions, and its dysregulation has been described in several rheumatological and autoimmune diseases, among which we find lupus. The activation of the endocannabinoid system correlates with an inhibition to produce proinflammatory molecules, which attract immune cells to the inflammatory site. When this process is altered, damage is inflicted to tissues, producing the many symptoms of this disease, which is why regulating this activity through the endocannabinoid system represents such a relevant therapeutic goal. Pain and inflammation are two of the most occurring symptoms caused by lupus. The anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits of CBD, the analgesic effects of THC, and the huge anti-inflammatory potential of THCA result in a great improvement in the quality of life of patients suffering from lupus. The indicated varieties for treating this condition are those containing equal amounts of THC and CBD. Cannabis can be administered in the form of tea, sublingual oil, flower inhaled with a vaporiser, and topical cream applied on the most affected areas.