According to a recent article in Forbes Magazine, possible treatments for COVID-19 include CBD, the oil extracted from hemp flowers. Patients suffering from the coronavirus are experiencing a litany of symptoms from difficulty breathing to gastrointestinal problems. Although new information is informing health providers daily, patients with pre-existing conditions and compromised immune systems seem most vulnerable to serious symptoms and death from the virus.
Researchers are exploring how cannabis-derived CBD might offer benefits for those suffering from severe forms of this infection. Interestingly, there have been several different ways researchers have suggested CBD might help, including its ability to reduce ACE2 expression and pro-inflammatory cytokine production to fight lung inflammation, and it’s potential as an antiviral. But few studies have tested these theories with actual experimentation.
A study from researchers at Augusta University in Georgia suggests that CBD may positively impact ARDS or Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome - a dangerous symptom in COVID-19 caused by an overactive inflammatory response. This is sometimes referred to as a ‘cytokine storm’. The study shows that in the absence of a cure for the disease, therapeutic treatments are even more urgent.
CBD could be effective in reducing pro-inflammatory cytokine production that accompanies a coronavirus infection. Reducing inflammation along with respiratory distress can help to mitigate lung damage. So far, research supports this theory.
To replicate severe respiratory cases found in COVID-19 patients, laboratory mice were artificially induced with ARDS. A cytokine storm would follow and reduced blood oxygen saturation by roughly 10 percent. Once the mice presented with lung distress they were administered CBD which totally or partially reversed the symptoms attributed to ARDS.
Study of the effectiveness of CBD on the novel coronavirus continues and additional research on how humans respond is where a final determination can be made. Cannabis has been considered a more widely accepted treatment for many conditions making it a strong consideration for treating COVID-19 patients.
For the latest safety guidelines on COVID-19, visit the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, (CDC)