Here’s where things can get confusing. With increasing legalization of cannabis and cannabinoids, more and more states have legalized cannabis and its constituents including THC and CBD for either medical or recreational use (several states have specifically legalized CBD products, but not THC or cannabis in general). But the federal government has held firm, keeping marijuana illegal as a Schedule I drug (defined as having no accepted medical use in the US, a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision, and a high potential for abuse) per the Drug Enforcement Agency’s classification of controlled substances.
Could cannabidiol help prevent tumors and other cancers before they grow? A 2012 study showed that animals treated with CBD were significantly less likely to develop colon cancer after being induced with carcinogens in a laboratory. Several studies had already shown that THC prevents tumors and reduces them, including one in 1996 on animal models that found that it decreased the incidence of both benign and hepatic adenoma tumors. In 2015, scientists analyzed the medical records of over eighty-four thousand male patients in California and found that those who used cannabis, but not tobacco, had a rate of bladder cancer that was 45 percent below the norm. Topical products can be used to treat and prevent skin cancers. Continuing research is focused on the best ratio of CBD to THC and the most effective dose level in cancer prevention and treatment.