Prostatitis, often described as an infection of the prostate is the swelling and inflammation of the prostate gland, a walnut-sized gland located directly below the bladder in men. The prostate gland produces fluid (semen) that nourishes and transports sperms. Prostatitis is so discomforting to the point of causing painful or difficult urination.
It affects men of all ages but tends to be more common in men 50 years of age or younger. According to the National Institutes of Health in the USA, prostatitis may account for up to 25% of all office visits for complaints involving the genital and urinary systems from young and middle aged men. There are two main types of prostatitis: chronic prostatitis and acute prostatitis.
Causes of prostatitis
Prostatitis is mainly caused by bacteria that may get into the prostate from the urethra by backward flow of infected urine or stool from the rectum. The infection may start when bacteria carried in urine leaks into your prostate. Other causes may include immune system disorder like nervous system disorder or injury to the prostate or prostate area.
Medical Marijuana and Prostatitis
The level of pain experienced by someone suffering from prostatitis can be debilitating and impact the ability to work and enjoy life. Although traditional painkillers can ease pain, they usually come with potentially negative side effects, the most common of which is blood pressure reduction which is harmful to people’s health.
Medical marijuana is a pain relief option that does not affect blood pressure, and can be a good substitution to conventional pain controllers. According to recent research, several clinical studies have confirmed medical marijuana’s ability to combat pain. In a survey conducted by Dean Tripp, PhD, associate professor of psychology at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario.
In all, 421 patients participated, 206 of whom (49%) had reported previous cannabis use. Of the respondents, 29% (59) said they used it for pain relief.
Along with the more widely known substance, THC, which is responsible for combating pain, medical marijuana contains Cannabinoil, or CBD, an important component of marijuana which has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties.
Along with CBD, medical cannabis has shown to reduce tissue inflammation as a result of the presence of the compound β-caryophyllene. The two together show great promise in clinical studies as excellent anti-inflammatory drugs that do not carry the risk of causing internal damage as do most of the NSAIDs currently used.
The medical value of marijuana has been known by medical practitioners around the world for centuries and it is for this reason that urology patients in pain have been turned to marijuana for relief. With more research, given the move to reschedule underway, marijuana may address more than pain in urologic pelvic pain as well.