CBD Oil (The Legal Kind) and Skin Cancer
The state where I live, Indiana, isn’t known for being particularly progressive. CBD oil was a hot topic in legislation for a long time before our governor signed a bill in March 2018 making it legal to possess CBD oil, as long as it contained 0.3 percent THC or less. For some people, this law was extremely overdue to be passed.
What does CBD oil do?
Why the interest in getting a law passed making it legal to possess CBD oil? CBD oil has been claimed as being beneficial in helping with chronic pain, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, anxiety and depression, schizophrenia, and skin cancer. Yes, skin cancer!
CBD oil studies have shown that it can encourage abnormal cell death. It can also slow the growth and spread of cancer. Would it help me? I’ve had skin cancer for over 20 years. I know the apprehension of discovering a new, suspicious area on my skin. I know the frustration of yet another skin check at the dermatologist’s office where I have an area that has to be biopsied. So when it became legal to have non-THC CBD oil, I thought I would give it a try.
Experimenting with CBD oil
The first thing I learned is that there is a difference in CBD oils. My first purchase was from a healthy foods store. The store worker told me what she would recommend for me, and suggested that I should take it once a day. The label on the bottle indicated it was flavorless, but I have to tell you that I really struggled with ingesting that CBD oil. It wasn’t exactly flavorless; it tasted like I was drinking dirt. And it was thick.
After four weeks of once-daily ingestion, I couldn’t really tell a difference in how I felt from before I took it, but I noticed that my skin was looking clearer. However, trying to take the CBD oil was still causing difficulties, and I was ready to give up. It was that disgusting. I decided to instead put it directly on a couple of small areas of actinic keratosis on my face. I applied it at night before bed and covered with a bandage. Four nights later, I noticed that the areas were shrinking! This was encouraging.
Finding better quality CBD
Around that time, a CBD oil store opened near my home. I stopped by one day after work and asked if all CBD oils were as icky as the one I was taking. The salesperson told me what they sold was completely different. It was available in flavors, and I chose peppermint.
When I got home and tried it, I was amazed at the difference. What I purchased in the CBD oil store was completely clear, slightly flavored with peppermint (although no flavoring was necessary for me to be able to take it without gagging), and it didn’t have the consistency of motor oil. (You can see the difference in the photo below.) Lesson learned – buy good quality CBD oil, which makes it much easier to take.
Skin check time!
When it was time for my next dermatologist’s appointment for a skin check, I had been taking CBD oil for a little over two months. I told my dermatologist that I was taking it, and she said that it is an anti-inflammatory so it definitely couldn’t hurt to take it. And for the first time in many appointments, I had nothing that needed biopsied or was causing concern.
Coincidence? Possibly. CBD oil use? Possibly. It’s still early on, and even some of the information I read stated that more studies are needed on the use of CBD oil for skin cancer treatment, but so far it sounds promising!
This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The SkinCancer.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.
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View Comments (8)
Do you still use the CBD for your skin cancer? Still say it’s helpful? Do u apply it externally to? I’d like to buy some off the THM website but don’t know which to buy to help with that? Any suggestions?
@annad Yes, CBD salves or serums.
Judy, SkinCancer.net Moderator
Hi, Anna! Thanks for your questions. I ran out of the CBD oil I was taking quite some time ago and for whatever reason haven’t yet been back to the store to get more. Oddly enough, though, once I stopped taking it I saw an increase in areas that needed treated or biopsied, so I’m planning on starting it again. I was taking 500 mg tincture orally, half a dropper twice a day. You may also want to look for a salve or serum to use on your skin. I’ve used the salve, which I found did help to shrink areas. If you’re ordering online, be sure to check the reviews because there can be a big difference in quality between brands. Where I live (Indiana), CBD oil products must be THC-free, so that is what is sold around here. Maybe the site you’re looking at has an option to chat with them or email them questions, and they could then suggest products that may work better for you. Hope this helps! Judy, SkinCancer.net Moderator
Thank you for your response! As far as the salve! You referring to a CBD Salve?
Hi Judy! Thank you for sharing your experience with CBD use. How many milligrams did you take take daily? Are you still? I am taking 10 mg a day and wondering if that is enough. I am waiting for decision dx results, but I suspect being proactive at keeping a recurrence away is best.
Hi, MaryRose! The kind I took (I’ve run out and need to get more) is 500 mg of CBD oil. I took a half dropper full twice a day (morning and night). I’ve derinitely seen a decline in the number of new skin cancer areas since I’ve started taking it!
Ok. That seems to be the standard amount. Thanks for taking the time to get back to me.
Is it possible to use CBD oil for skin cancer treatment? An advocate shares her experience trying out different CBD oils to improve her actinic keratosis.
CBD Oil for Skin Cancer
Why Use CBD for Skin Cancer?
Skin cancer is one of the most common, most treatable, and yet also one of the deadliest types of cancer. It typically presents as a skin lesion that won’t heal and tends to keep growing and ulcerating indefinitely. When caught at an early stage, this cancer can often be cured fairly easily by removing the affected area. Things can get a bit trickier once it has metastasized – which means it has progressed below the surface of the skin and burrowed into vital organs.
In recent years, there has been increasing attention to the use of cannabis and CBD oil for skin cancer 1 .
Anyone who starts exploring the topic of CBD for cancer will eventually come across CBD oil cancer testimonials.
Are these claims realistic? Should patients now consider using CBD oil for skin cancer as part of their treatment? What is the position of the scientific community on this matter? These are just some of the questions that will be clarified in this article.
Different Forms of Skin Cancer
There are three main types of skin cancer: melanoma, basal cell carcinoma (BCC), and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) – all of which seem to respond well to the use of CBD oil. One of the most interesting things about using cannabis oil for skin cancer is how it seems to enhance the effect of conventional treatments, which means patients will likely benefit from CBD oil for melanoma, CBD oil for basal cell carcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma. Modern research suggests 2 CBD oil can be used for skin cancer with no compromise to conventional treatment plans.
Technically speaking, CBD is the non-psychotropic component in cannabis – the highly controversial plant also known as “marijuana” that was for the last few decades outlawed and banned around the world. As CBD is usually derived from industrial hemp (which is also a type of cannabis), nowadays a lot of countries have embraced its use, as long as it does not contain a high concentration of THC. In America, many states openly sell CBD products.
At this point, CBD oil for skin cancer is on the verge of being officially reintroduced to modern medicine. Since political administrations are being understandably slow and cautious in aligning with the scientific advancements, many patients have to find their CBD for skin cancer online, especially in places where cannabis legalization has not fully unfolded yet.
What is medical research saying about CBD oil for skin cancer?
Anyone who wishes to catch up to the medical research around cannabis oil as a possible cancer treatment will find massive amounts of information available online. At this point in history, cannabis has been extensively studied 3 with promising results that already led to the development of the first cannabinoid-based pharmaceuticals.
There is now little reason for doubting cannabis and its extracts are real medicine, one that could be quite valuable in the treatment of cancer as well as many other diseases, both physical and mental. To understand how this is possible, a good starting point would be reading about the endocannabinoid system.
Even though it was only discovered in recent decades, this is the largest neurotransmitter system in the human body; it seems to have a key role in regulating the maintenance of physical and mental health from a cellular level, and it’s activated by the unique compounds available in the cannabis plant. These compounds, including CBD, THC and several other cannabinoids effectively seem to mimic substances that our body produces naturally, which are extremely important to the maintenance of good health 4 .
There is plenty of medical research exploring and evaluating the relationship between CBD and cancer in general, which is giving hope to patients suffering specifically form skin cancer. Studies have shown that cannabidiol can promote the apoptotic death of cancer cells 5 acting independently of the cb1 and cb2 receptors. The way this happens remains not fully known, for now, however it is assumed that it is due to the compound’s ability to enhance the production of reactive oxygen species in cancer cells 6 .
How to Use CBD Oil for Skin Cancer
Since pure CBD oil is extremely thick and unwieldy, it’s sometimes diluted in a carrier oil such as coconut oil to make it easier to apply on the skin as well as improve absorption. Some patients also dilute the oil in alcohol (creating a rubbing salve), while others just apply the pure oil directly. It seems that as long as the plant-based cannabinoids remain in contact with the cancerous wound, recovery will begin and the lesion will show signs of healing within days.
It’s worth noting the results seem to be dependent on the dose, and it typically takes a strong concentration of cannabis oil that’s applied regularly and in sufficient quantity to a skin cancer lesion, in order to effectively heal it. As well as applying the CBD oil on the cancerous lesion (if possible), it’s recommended to also consume CBD oil internally to boost the immune system 7 as well as to minimize the side effects and improve the success rate of conventional cancer treatments.
CBD oil for skin cancer: what’s the right dosage?
CBD oil has nearly no toxicity and no major side effects 8 , meaning patients shouldn’t worry about over-dosing. In fact – if a patient has positive results using the oil, it can be worth trying to increase the dosage to accelerate the rate of recovery.
CBD dosage for skin cancer
Finding the right dose of CBD oil for skin cancer will depend on several factors, such as your tollerance for CBD as well as the severity of your condition. We recommend starting low and gradually increasing the dossage until you see an improvement. We draw our recommendation from the book “CBD: A Patient’s Guide to Medical Cannabis” by Leonard Leinow and Juliana Birnbaum 9 We describe this approach in detail in our post on CBD dosage.
CBD oil is safe to use both topically as well as internally, and in fact, it should be administered both ways at once to get the best results. Patients who are undergoing chemotherapy or radiotherapy as part of their cancer treatment should benefit greatly from adding CBD oil to their diet. There are many studies available showing a CBD is very useful to minimize the side effects of conventional cancer treatments, and some evidence suggests its use is associated with improved survival rates 10 .
Using CBD Oil for Skin Cancer in Pets
This may sound a bit surprising, but CBD oil for skin cancer in pets is also a popular topic. Medical cannabis is just as effective in pets 11 as in humans; in fact, it seems to be effective in all vertebrate animals, since it has been established they all have an endocannabinoid system just like humans do.
CBD oil for skin cancer in pets is the exact same oil that is used to treat human patients. It is also used in the same way – ideally by applying the oil directly on the skin lesion, either in its pure form or diluted in a carrier. CBD oil products are safe to use both in humans as well as their pets; similarly to the treatment of human patients, it’s advisable to feed some oil to ailing pets to enhance the topical treatment.
Final Thoughts on CBD for cancer
Hopefully, this information has shed light on the usefulness of CBD for cancer, as well as the clinical potential of cannabinoid compounds available only from the cannabis plant. In the next few years, it’s highly likely cannabis will become increasingly popular in mainstream medicine… but patients who are treating a skin cancer right now don’t have the luxury of waiting – so it could be wise to learn more about the endocannabinoid system and its relevance to cancer treatment.
Should patients now consider using CBD oil for skin cancer as part of their treatment? Read about the healing benefits of CBD over skin cancer and find out