WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- Vaping marijuana can get you way, way higher than smoking the exact same amount of pot, researchers said.
- Scientists tested the effects of vaped versus smoked marijuana on 17 subjects who had smoked marijuana before.
- After six 8.5-hour sessions, the effects of vaping proved much more potent than just smoking the weed.
Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Behavioral Pharmacology Research Unit in Baltimore conducted a research that tested the effects of smoked versus vaped marijuana. The study involved 17 participants who had experienced smoking marijuana although not in the 30 days before the research begins.
According to Live Science, the research was funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, though one of the study’s authors reported that he has previously received fees from, or consulted for, companies with ties to cannabis.
The study was conducted over the course of six 8.5-hour sessions. The volunteers either smoked or vaped a dose of marijuana containing 0 milligrams, 10mg or 25mg of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) during each session. THC is the primary psychoactive component of cannabis.
Though each participant both smoked and vaped all three possible doses over their six sessions, they were not advised to how much THC they were using each time. This is to prevent bias when they fill out a drug-impairment questionnaire that follows.
Aside from the questionnaire wherein they share how high they felt, the participants also did a battery of physical and cognitive tests throughout the duration of each high.
Their blood pressures and heart rates were measured 10 times over 8 hours. They were also subjected to computerized tasks that made them replicate shapes on a screen, solve simple math equations and respond to two different stimuli simultaneously with a computer keyboard and a mouse.
The findings revealed that inhaling a 25mg dose of THC will get you way, way high, regardless of whether it was vaped or smoked. But the effects of vaping proved much more potent at every dosage.
“Vaporized cannabis produced significantly greater subjective drug effects, cognitive and psychomotor impairment, and higher blood THC concentrations than the same doses of smoked cannabis,” the researchers wrote in their study that was published in the journal JAMA Network Open on Nov. 30.
“Notably, the highest dose of cannabis administered in this study (25mg of THC: 0.19 g; 13.4 percent THC) is substantially smaller and has a lower THC concentration than what is typically contained in pre-rolled cannabis cigarettes available for purchase in cannabis dispensaries, which commonly contain roughly 1.0 g of cannabis with THC concentrations often exceeding 18 percent,” the study authors wrote.
Now that recreational marijuana is legal in nine American states and all across Canada, it’s important to know that even moderate amounts of THC can have significant impairing effects on its users.
Source: Live Science