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Can You Inject Weed? – Cannadelics

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Come on, if you’re in the world of weed, this must have crossed your mind at least once. As lay-people, we don’t always know why one drug gets injected, and another is given as a pill. Or why research studies use injections when studying compounds, but only release them using other delivery methods. Today we ask the question, can you inject weed? Like, really main-line it? And if you do, what happens?

Is it possible to inject weed, and if so, how to go about it, and what to expect? We are a cannabis and psychedelics platform which covers big stories in these expanding industries, and beyond. We also offer the Cannadelics Weekly Newsletter to keep readers updated, and to offer a range of deals on products like vapes, smoking devices, edibles, other cannabis paraphernalia, and cannabinoid compounds including the crazy popular Delta 8 & HHC. You can find offers in our ‘best of’ lists, so head on over, and buy yourself the products you really want to use most.


Delivery methods

The delivery method is the method by way a drug is introduced to your system. Each drug has one, or several, delivery avenues, and often particular compounds cannot be administered in certain ways. Sometimes, a certain method of administration is possible, but frowned on. Take opioids for example. They’re usually given as a pill, but we know they can be injected, put in a patch or cream, or used in a syrup. We also know they can be snorted, but this is never the intended form of delivery.

As another example, mushrooms are usually eaten or made into a tea, though new companies are now making skin patches as well. They don’t work when you inject them, snort them, or smoke them, or to such a minimal degree that using in these ways, is meaningless. Though there is always the errant experimenter, these mushroom-taking principals, seem pretty-well understood. In this case, its just about whether something works or not.

General delivery modes include using pills and capsules; oils and tinctures; creams, salves, and patches; smoking and vaping; through nose or mouth inhalation; as a syrup or other liquid; or through either IV (intravenous) or IM (intramuscular) injection. Some drugs are usable in more ways than others. When looking at modes of delivery, bioavailability and toxicity are important.

Bioavailability relates to how much of a compound your body can realistically use of a medication. Toxicity relates to what point a compound becomes dangerous to your system function. For some drugs, the same amount given two different ways, can elicit two different levels, whereby one method might lead to toxicity, when the other does not. For example, when weed is inhaled, the bioavailability is 10-35%. When eaten, its 4-12%. This according to a 2021 study on cannabis pharmacokinetics and mechanisms of action.

Weed delivery method
Weed delivery method

When it comes to weed, we have tons of ways of getting it in us. Most of us smoke and vape, or swallow down an edible. Plenty are using oils and tinctures, and there are an array of cannabis creams, salves, and skin patches. There are also nasal inhalers. What do we not do? Snort it. We know this doesn’t work since the oil soluble compounds repel our water-soluble mucous membranes. But does that mean weed can’t be injected either? Read on to find out more.

Can you inject weed?

Sometimes weed comes as an oil or tincture, which is in a liquid form. Sometimes this comes in a container that looks like a big ole syringe (even if it’s oversized and not meant for injection). So what’s the deal? Can you inject weed oil or any other form of weed, directly into a vein or muscle? The official answer, is actually yes. It can be done, but is not a standard method, as it comes with some issues.

Cannabis has been used for injections for some 50 years in research settings. In this capacity, IV delta-9 injections provide a major benefit in that it standardizes bioavailability between people. With IV injections, everything is absorbed, and the differences between individuals in their uptake, is less profound.

So, it sounds like it’s possible, right? Yet, no one does it. Except for that small percentage of self-experiments out there. What do they have to say? Well, even they exist in rather minuscule numbers considering how widely used cannabis is. In one place, a person spoke of injecting kief by mixing it with blood, heating to dissolve the kief, filtering, and then injecting. His response to it?:

“I felt extremely baked for about 5-10 minutes before it quickly wore off. This was something i did purely for the sake of being able to say i tried it, having never heard of anyone else doing it. The high was really unique, not in necessarily a good or bad way. I have had no ill effects after several hours, but i would not recommend it to anyone who isn’t VERY confident in what they are doing.”

What we don’t know, is who this guy is, what other compounds he might have been on, what happened in the longer-term, or if this is a true story. How does this story compare to other research into the effects of injecting weed?

Can you inject weed? The research!

It seems the question can you inject weed is popular enough, that the topic was officially looked into by researchers, who put out this study in 2004 entitled The Psychotomimetic Effects of Intravenous Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol in Healthy Individuals: Implications for Psychosis. In it, they performed a 3-day, double-blind, randomized, counterbalanced study, on the behavioral, cognitive, and endocrine effects, of injecting 0, 2.5, or 5 mg of delta-9 THC intravenously. However, what the study represents most, is how easily information is outdated, or incorrectly assessed.

The study was performed on 22 people who all had some level of cannabis exposure, though none were diagnosed with cannabis abuse disorder. The researchers found that injected delta-9, at any level used, caused the following results:

Inject weed
Inject weed

“(1) produced schizophrenia-like positive and negative symptoms; (2) altered perception; (3) increased anxiety; (4) produced euphoria; (5) disrupted immediate and delayed word recall, sparing recognition recall; (6) impaired performance on tests of distractibility, verbal fluency, and working memory (7) did not impair orientation; (8) increased plasma cortisol.”

They concluded that “These data indicate that Δ-9-THC produces a broad range of transient symptoms, behaviors, and cognitive deficits in healthy individuals that resemble some aspects of endogenous psychoses. These data warrant further study of whether brain cannabinoid receptor function contributes to the pathophysiology of psychotic disorders.”

What they didn’t account for – despite the title of the study – was the method of delivery. We already know injections provide for very high bioavailability. We also know that delta-9, in high amounts, can temporarily cause the equivalent of a psychedelic ‘bad trip’. In these instances, a user, seemingly responding to over-stimulation, looks to experience an anxiety attack. This is often referred to as some kind of psychosis.

Like psychedelics, cannabis increases the amount of serotonin in the system; that cannabis and psychedelics produce similar bad trips in too-high doses, actually makes a lot of sense. Both compounds are constantly looked at for their connection to psychotic issues, but it seems in both cases, this comes up as a form of overdose, not standard effect. And in neither case has this effect carried on permanently.

The researchers took all this to be the general effects of delta-9, NOT the general effects of injected delta-9. They open the discussion with “The principal finding of the study is that Δ-9-THC produced…” This is very strange, as it calls into question all results, as the results don’t take into account the delivery method, or the increased bioavailability.

Subsequent research into cannabis and intravenous use makes clear how important dosing is with IV usage. In this report from 2012, called Cannabis in the Arm: What Can we Learn from Intravenous Cannabinoid Studies?, researchers reference a Yale study which found “that I.V. administered Δ-9-THC can elicit transient schizophrenia-like positive psychotic symptoms and schizophrenia-like cognitive impairments in a proportion of healthy volunteers.”

They then go on to say, “The more recent I.V. delta-9-THC studies have used doses of 1.25mg, 2.5mg, and 5mg. These doses have been found to be psychotomimetic, anxiogenic, dysphoric and cognitively impairing.” And then that “It may therefore be possible that doses which are considered by participants to be the strongest they have experienced reflect an over-intoxication, which in turn results in such symptoms.”

So basically, injecting by itself doesn’t have to lead to such symptoms, but getting the dose wrong, can. This might help explain why its frowned on for regular people to inject cannabis, as it’s a wildly different thing to dose for injections, and very easy for a person to make themselves sick. As of yet, I haven’t seen appropriate amounts listed anywhere for dosing in this way, indicating it might not be known, even now.

Weed injection
Weed injection

So…can a regular person inject weed?

The answer to the question of can you inject weed, is actually yes, you can. And its regularly done for study purposes. However, even now there seems to be confusion over how to dose for intravenous use, as well as no good way for a standard person to turn their flowery plant into an injectable preparation.

In this article from 2018, a recipe for an IV injection included: “10 mg THC, 10 mg CBD, 150.0 mg polysorbate 80 (Tween 80), 10.0 mg sodium ascorbate, 500 μL absolute ethanol, and 0.9% sodium chloride,” at pH of 7.4, which all together totaled 10 mL. “The IV solutions were freshly prepared and filtrated under sterile conditions after sonication for 30 s.” Specific processing techniques apart from this, were not made clear.

It seems the biggest reasons cannabis is not regularly injected by the masses, are 1) the process needed to make the injection is extensive itself, and not realistic for the majority of users, and 2) the ability to dose, without overdoing, is not well understood. For anyone interested, it’s best to stick with standard delivery options when it comes to weed. And if in the future things change, take advantage of the new information, at that time.

Conclusion

It’s always good to know what makes sense to do, and what doesn’t. We’ve got tons of answers to other mind-boggling questions as well, like can you smoke magic mushrooms? Snort kief? Smoke in space? Or can you smoke a gummy, tincture, or oil? Read up to find out!

Welcome everyone! Thanks for taking time to hang out with us at Cannadelics.com, a preeminent offering in the independent news realm, covering the expanding cannabis and psychedelics landscapes. Join us frequently to remain in-the-loop on what’s going on, and head over to the Cannadelics Weekly Newsletter, so you’re never late on getting a story.





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bioavailability

How myrcene affects THC potency and toxins

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Less discussed is myrcene’s ability to prevent the metabolism of certain drugs by inhibiting an enzyme. As a bonus, toxins become less effective which prevents adverse reactions from the terpene itself. Myrcene purportedly affects THC potency in more ways than one, though.

In da’ couch with myrcene

Terpenes are a vital asset to any cannabis strain but there are still many mysteries to their mechanisms. Myrcene, for example, is a major monoterpene that more or less dominates Indica cultivars from Afghanistan. Combined with thiols, the terpene produces a pungent skunk odour. Although, myrcene is reminiscent of musky stone fruits by itself.

Sedation is a common effect brought on by myrcene since it agonizes the receptor, α2 adreno. Hypotension and a slow heart rate fall in line with sedation, giving THC a heavier effect. Beyond this, studies suggest that myrcene can further increase the potency of THC by opening the blood-brain barrier. With a more porous entry to the brain, greater quantities of THC can flood into intoxicating receptors. But myrcene has another trick to increase THC’s bioavailability.

Myrcene affects THC potency.
Acute doses of myrcene might be toxic. In contrast, the terpene inhibits genotoxins and aflatoxin B. Sedation is possible via alpha 2-adrenoreceptors, which can be blocked by naloxone.

Blocking metabolism and THC’s longer welcome

Drugs are often broken down in the liver by isoforms of an enzyme known as CYP450. Tetrahydrocannabinol is no different and myrcene inhibits different isoforms of CYP450. This will prevent smoked THC (any THCa that decarboxylates upon inhalation) from breaking down in the body, increasing potency. Essentially, myrcene allows for a greater potency by preventing the metabolism of THC by allowing more cannabinoids to soak into your receptors.

Peeling back the truth about mangoes and THC

Mangoes contain a little myrcene which manifested a false myth that eating a mango will affect the potency of THC. In reality, mangoes are likely not rich enough in terpenes to achieve the dose required to affect THC potency. Grapefruit, on the other hand, affects the metabolism of drugs by inhibiting CYP450 enzymes.

Although, myrcene and other CYP450 inhibiting drugs will affect edible THC differently than inhaled cannabinoids. THC metabolizes into an active substance known as 11-OH-THC, or 11-hydroxyl-THC. Since myrcene inhibits metabolism, it might decrease an edible’s potency, depending on the edible and individual.

Self-inhibited toxicity

While CYP450 inhibitors can negatively interact with other medications, causing serious problems, they do procure a major benefit. Myrcene is toxic in acute doses according to an in vitro study on human liver cells characterizing hepatoma, a form of cancer. A more recent study conducted by a company that sells myrcene containing beverages provided evidence to refute potential toxicity from myrcene.

The terpene can still produce a toxic effect in doses humans are not normally exposed to, but the toxicity is entirely inhibited by other mechanisms of myrcene. Carcinogens and Aflatoxin B, for example, must be broken down by CYP enzymes in order for the body to absorb the toxins. Thankfully, myrcene prevents toxicity by inhibiting CYP enzymes. The inhibition of CYP enzymes blocks many toxins. Then again, the effect can also increase the toxicity of other processes.

Let us know in the comments how you react to high myrcene strains.

Sources

  1. Surendran, S., Qassadi, F., Surendran, G., Lilley, D., & Heinrich, M. (2021). Myrcene-What Are the Potential Health Benefits of This Flavouring and Aroma Agent?. Frontiers in nutrition8, 699666.
  2. Jansen, C., Shimoda, L., Kawakami, J. K., Ang, L., Bacani, A. J., Baker, J. D., Badowski, C., Speck, M., Stokes, A. J., Small-Howard, A. L., & Turner, H. (2019). Myrcene and terpene regulation of TRPV1. Channels (Austin, Tex.)13(1), 344–366.
  3. Orlando, J. B., Silva, B. O., Pires-Cunha, C. L., Hiruma-Lima, C. A., Gaivão, I., & Maistro, E. L. (2019). Genotoxic effects induced by beta-myrcene following metabolism by liver HepG2/C3A human cells. Journal of toxicology and environmental health. Part A82(3), 176–185.





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Give It a Puff with Cannabis Inhalers

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There are a ton of different ways of ingesting cannabis these days from standard smoking, to vaping, to eating edibles, to applying patches, to drinking down tinctures and oils, to rubbing creams on the skin, to sticking it up body parts, to puffing it in an inhaler. So what’s with this inhaler thing? Is it useful, or beneficial in some way? Read on to find out more about cannabis inhalers, and if they’re the right product for you.

Cannabis inhalers are a new and interesting way of getting your weed fix, whether you want it for medical or recreational purposes. We’re all about covering the world of weed, so check out The THC Weekly Newsletter to keep on track with all the important stories of the industry today, and to get exclusive access to deals on flowers, vapes, edibles, and many more products! We’ve also got great deals on cannabinoid compounds like HHC-O, Delta 8Delta 9 THCDelta-10 THCTHCOTHCVTHCP HHC. Find them in our “Best-of” lists!


What is a delivery method?

Cannabis inhalers make up one method of the many different cannabis delivery methods that exist today. A delivery method is just a fancy way of saying ‘how to get it in you’, though which delivery method you use will determine how the drug might affect you. In this way, delivery methods were not created equally.

Consider that when you smoke or vape, cannabinoids get directly into the blood stream by way of the alveoli in the lungs. The cannabinoids bind to endocannabinoid receptors, and very little goes through the gastrointestinal tract to get metabolized by the liver. This is not the case when eating an edible or swallowing down tincture or oil.

In these cases, the cannabinoids go to the stomach, and through the digestive tract, where the THC binds to a glurononide compound to form another version of THC called 11-hydroxy-THC. 11-Hydroxy-THC is often thought of as being more intense, and certainly lasts for hours longer, while also possible having a better chance at crossing the blood brain barrier due to being more water soluble than standard THC.

delivery methods

What about putting it on your skin, via a patch or cream? In these cases, it also bypasses the digestive tract, much like with smoking, being absorbed directly into the bloodstream. This is also the case with suppositories which are generally inserted into a vagina or anus, and not only get medicine directly to where a problem might be, but allow for quick absorption through areas with lots of blood vessels.

What is a cannabis inhaler?

When we speak of cannabis inhalers, it’s what it sounds like, to a degree. It looks like an inhaler an asthmatic might use, and is used in the same way. When the inhaler bulb is pushed down, it creates a vapor that the user very quickly sucks into their lungs. This means it operates like a smoking or vaping delivery method, allowing the cannabinoids access to the bloodstream via the lungs.

Cannabis inhalers don’t produce smoke, but instead are more like vaporizers, producing a vapor, but without the application of heat. Unlike with standard vapes – either dry herb or oil, cannabis inhalers offer the ability for specific dosing. This is similar to, or even better than, the ability to get a specific dose by way of a needle used for oil or tinctures, which can measure in units, or a capsule with a set amount within. However, those methods compete with the idea of bioavailability, the idea of how much of the substance we’ll actually be able to absorb in the end.

Inhalers provide very specific dosing by way of letting out a metered amount of vapor in each pull. This way, it’s always known how much medicine is being ingested. These inhalers have been pointed out as being a possibly useful treatment for people suffering from asthma, as well as a generally good way of simply delivering cannabinoids into the body, regardless of lung issues. In terms of using it as a delivery method, inhalers provide a discreet way of getting medicine or getting high, which literally masquerades as a medical device regardless of how its being used. Plus, as an added bonus, it creates absolutely no weed smell.

Are cannabis inhalers useful?

Inhalers provide a highly bioavailable way to get cannabinoids into your system, and to do it very quickly, just like smoking and vaping. How bioavailable? One study called The pharmacokinetics, efficacy, and safety of a novel selective-dose cannabis inhaler in patients with chronic pain: A randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial, investigated the Syqe inhaler. It was found by investigators that apparently tiny dose differences caused pretty big effect changes.

“Such subtle microgram dose differences potentially indicate that the ∆9-THC dose–response effects are extremely sensitive and require very high dosing precision. It is assumed the reasons for such promising drug delivery performance are the bioavailability and adherence-enhancing technologies of the Syqe Inhaler platform in addition to the electronic selective dosing capabilities.”

cannabis ingestion

While an IV injection is generally considered the method with the highest bioavailability, which gets it closer to a 100% absorption rate, inhalation via smoking has shown a lower rate of closer to 30%, while oral ingestion is much lower at 4-12%. Inhalers might not produce a more bioavailable form than a standard joint or vape, but certainly are on par if not better. In one study that looked at nicotine bioavailability in short puffs vs deep inhalations (the equivalent of a joint vs an inhaler), both methods showed about the same equivalency.

Dry powder inhalers

When we think of inhalers, we generally think of an aerosol mist that’s released. This is the standard method of inhalers, although now there is a new kind being released, dry-powder inhalers. These inhalers, as it sounds, deliver medication to the lungs in powder form. These inhalers can also provide a specific dose, but sometime require a bit more work on the part of the consumer to get it correct.

The powder is typically held in a capsule which is manually loaded, or in the inhaler itself depending on the proprietary technology. Much like a regular inhaler, once it is ready to go, the consumer takes one deep inhale, and holds their breath for 5-10 seconds. Since powder can irritate the lungs in big amounts, each dose is usually not more than a few tens of milligrams.

These inhalers generally rely on the patient very forcibly breathing in, as a way to get the powder from the device to the lungs, and to break up the particles into small enough particulates. Those who can’t sufficiently inhale, might not get the correct dose. In fact, its been shown that 50-100% of users use these inhalers incorrectly, which doesn’t say much for them. On the other hand, as they become more well known and available, perhaps how to use them will become more standardized.

Powder inhalers have been shown to be good for treating respiratory ailments like asthma, bronchitis and emphysema. These inhalers require the correct storage which involves a dry place, not more than 77 °F (25 °C), and for the package to be sealed. Any moisture can affect the powder, and the ability to use it.

Recreational or medicinal?

Truth is, when it comes to weed, nearly any delivery method can be either for recreational or medical use. The main exception here are IV administration and IM (intramuscular) administration, which are generally only administered in a medical setting, making them really only for medical use. This could change if the idea of injectable weed ever became big, but I don’t see that being the case for now.

inhaler

Cannabis inhalers could prove very useful for people like asthmatics that need to get medicine directly to the lungs, and without the irritation and harm of smoking. But it doesn’t mean that others can’t benefit. Not only have they shown to be good for pain as well – likely because of the high bioavailability, but they can also just be used for fun, as a discreet way to get high in public places.

While I don’t often see people puffing on inhalers recreationally, they are being sold in this way. Case in point, EOS Labs which sells Inspire, the 100% smoke-free inhaler, offered for both CBD and THC. These inhalers can be found in dispensaries in Oregon, but are not currently sold in other states due to regulations. Hopefully in the future this will change.

Conclusion

Perhaps cannabis inhalers will remain a more medically used device. Or, perhaps the next big thing will be for everyone to walk around with what looks like asthma medication. Either way, this method of ingestion is becoming more popular, giving a smoke-free, heat-free way of getting cannabinoids like THC and CBD into the system, and to do so undercover.

Hello readers! Welcome to CBDtesters.co, the #1 web spot for the most relevant and important cannabis and psychedelics-related news going on globally. Join us frequently to stay in-the-know on the quickly-morphing landscape of legal drugs and industrial hemp, and check out The THC Weekly Newsletter, so you’re first to get every news story.

DisclaimerHi, I’m a researcher and writer. I’m not a doctor, lawyer, or businessperson. All information in my articles is sourced and referenced, and all opinions stated are mine. I am not giving anyone advice, and though I am more than happy to discuss topics, should someone have a further question or concern, they should seek guidance from a relevant professional.





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