Sickle Cell Disorders – Cannabis Research

Sickle Cell Disorders Research Dashboard


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CannaKeys has 13 studies associated with Sickle Cell Disorders.

Here is a small sampling of Sickle Cell Disorders studies by title:

Components of the Sickle Cell Disorders Research Dashboard

  • Dosing information available for Sickle Cell Disorders
  • Chemotype guidance for treating Sickle Cell Disorders with cannabis
  • Synopsis of cannabis research for Sickle Cell Disorders
  • Individual study details for Sickle Cell Disorders

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Overview - Sickle Cell Disorders

Description of Sickle Cell Disorders

Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a genetic illness characterized by "flawed" red blood cells, which, instead of being round, mimic the shape of a sickle. Most likely, the body originally produced the mutation to protect itself from malaria parasites; now the disease claims responsibility for destroying one's quality of life or even shortening it. SCD is prevalent in people who descend from sub-Saharan Africa and other tropical regions where malaria runs rampant. Malaria is a cyclical disease and, in a real sense, SCD mirrors that cyclical nature. Orthodox treatments include pain medication, antidepressants, anti- anxiety medication, blood transfusions, surgery, other emergency care, and sometimes bone marrow transplants in children. Although presently orthodox medicine provides no cure, it can diagnose the trait and, thus, give potential future parents the information they need to make informed choices. The disease's symptoms derive from the misshapen red blood cells' inability to carry oxygen and nutrients to the body and from the clumping of cells, which causes occlusions. Resulting symptoms include anemia, low energy, pain, enlarged spleen, paleness of the skin, itching, infections with fever, rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, stroke, autosplenectomy (destruction of the spleen), renal failure, and other organ damage.

Disease Classification

Condition: Sickle Cell Disorders
Disease Family: Cardiovascular Disease
Organ System: Cardiovascular System
ICD-10 Chapter: Diseases of the Blood and Blood-forming Organs, and Certain Disorders involving the Immune Mechanism
ICD-10 Code: D57

Sickle Cell Disorders Symptoms:

Malformed red blood cells, low hemoglobin count, anemia, itching, low energy, pale skin, swollen hands or feet, spleen (e.g. pain, enlarged), sickle cell crisis, shortness of breath, vaso-occlusive crisis (e.g. ischemia, pain, tissue death)

Also known as:

SCD, Sickle-cell anaemia, Double heterozygous sickling disorders, Sickle-cell trait, Sickle cell nephropathy

Drug Interactions

THC Interaction with Pharmaceutical Drugs

  • THC can enhance the effects of drugs that cause sedation and depress the central nervous system, such as benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and alcohol, for example. 
  • THC is metabolized by and an inhibitor of a number of enzymatic liver pathways referred to as cytochrome P450. There are more than 50 enzymes belonging to this enzyme family, a number of which are responsible for the breakdown of common drugs such as antidepressants (e.g. amitriptyline, doxepine, fluvoxamine), antipsychotics (haloperidol, clozapine, stelazine), beta-blockers (e.g. propranolol), bronchodilators (e.g. theophylline), or bloodthinners (e.g. warfarin).  Thus patients taking these classes of medication may find that THC increases the concentration and effects of these drugs as well as the duration of their effects.
  • Clinical observation suggests no likely interactions with other pharmaceuticals at a total daily dose of up to 20mg THC.

CBD Interaction with Pharmaceutical Drugs

  • CBD may alter action on metabolic enzymes (certain drug-transport mechanisms), and as such may alter interactions with other drugs, some of which may produce therapeutic or adverse effects. For instance, CBD interacts with the enzyme cytochrome P450 3A4 and cytochrome P450 2C19, increasing the bioavailability of anti-epileptic drugs such as clobazam (a benzodiazepine). This makes it possible to achieve the same results at significantly lower dosages, reducing treatment costs and risks of adverse effects. 
  • Groups of drugs affected include: anti-epileptic drugs, psychiatric drugs, and drugs affecting metabolic enzymes, for example.
  • Clinical observations suggest no likely interactions with other pharmaceuticals at a total daily dose of up to 100mg CBD

Dosing Considerations

THC Dosage Considerations

  • THC micro dose:  0.1 mg to 0.4 mg
  • THC low dose:  0.5 mg to 5 mg
  • THC medium dose:  6 mg to 20 mg
  • THC high dose:  21 mg to 50+ mg

CBD Dosage Considerations

  • CBD low dose:  0.4 mg to 19 mg
  • CBD medium dose: 20 mg to 99 mg
  • CBD high dose:  100 mg to 800+ mg (upper limits tested ~1,500mg)

Disclaimers: Information on this site is provided for informational purposes only and is not meant to substitute for the advice provided by your own physician or other medical professional. You should not use the information contained herein for diagnosing a health problem or disease. If using a product, you should read carefully all product packaging. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem, promptly contact your health care provider.

Information on this site is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over-the-counter medication is also available. Consult your physician, nutritionally oriented health care practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications.