Marijuana and Glaucoma – Latest Research

Glaucoma is a serious condition that can lead to blindness. It affects some 60 million people worldwide. 3 million of those adults live in the United States and while the condition normally affects those over 60, these three million citizens are aged 40 and over. By 2020, that number may jump to 80 million worldwide. Glaucoma is a disease that shows few symptoms and is rarely caught in the early stages. 

While there are treatments, one all-natural treatment seems to help people with glaucoma. That treatment is cannabis, and there are even strains that are best for people suffering from this condition. Read on to find out more.

Understanding Glaucoma

In the simplest of terms, glaucoma is an eye condition in which pressure at the front of the eye begins to increase. This slowly begins to damage the optic nerve, leading to eventual loss of vision. It is the second leading cause of blindness, particularly in those over 60.

Types of Glaucoma

The three most common types of glaucoma are:

  • Open-angle glaucoma: The most common kind of glaucoma. It generally has no symptoms and causes gradual loss of vision

  • Closed-angle glaucoma: The least common kind of glaucoma. It is characterized by quick pressure changes and presents with several symptoms

  • Normal-tension glaucoma: This kind of glaucoma is seen in people with a family history of glaucoma and cardiovascular issues.

The Science on Medical Cannabis and Glaucoma

Research on how cannabis can effectively treat glaucoma began back in the 1970s. It was first noticed then that the administration of cannabis can drop the eye pressure caused by glaucoma by 20%-30%. In a more recent 2005 study, patients over 60 who were not responding to conventional treatment were given cannabis. Intraocular pressure (IOP) was controlled by the substance. Further loss of vision was halted as well. 

Administering Medical Marijuana for Glaucoma

Smoked or vaporized cannabis can begin relieving pressure within a few minutes and peaks within a couple of hours. While edibles would take longer to feel the effects, this type of ingestion may last longer. A portable vaporizer that utilizes dry herbs, concentrates can mean on-the-go treatment for glaucoma since multiple treatments daily are often necessary. A vapor mod with cannabis oil or concentrate cartridge can also be used for on-the-go treatment for those with busy lives.

Best strains for Glaucoma

This is one of those conditions where it seems that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is more effective than cannabidiol (CBD) in treatment. THC showed a 25% decrease in eye pressure while CBD showed little effectiveness in decreasing pressure.

  • Maui Wowie 15% – 20% THC

This strain, with a tropical flavor, is most commonly prescribed for glaucoma patients. It is a sativa that is great for patients who have not used marijuana previously. It also provides energy and reduces stress.

  • Sour Diesel 19% – 22% THC

This strain has heavily euphoric effects, so new patients should start out with smaller doses. However, this strain seems to last a bit longer than other strains, which is why it is a good strain for glaucoma patients. 

  • Cherry Kola (17% THC)

A calming but energetic high without the effect of “couch lock” makes this a popular strain for active glaucoma patients. It is a potent strain, containing 20% total cannabinoids.

Glaucoma is a serious condition that can be diagnosed by a licensed optometrist or ophthalmologist. Seeing your eye doctor annually is one way to keep your eyes healthy. Utilizing cannabis in the treatment of glaucoma should be monitored by a health professional.

This is a guest article, here’s a little about the author 

Michael is a marketing and creative content specialist at with a primary focus on customer satisfaction. Technology and fitness combined with healthy lifestyle obsession are his main talking points.

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