03 Mar Cannabis may Cause Sexual Dysfunction
Marijuana is widely used as a recreational drug. Some have argued its medicinal benefits, using the position to push for the legalization of the drug. However, marijuana also carries with it certain risks. One side effect associated with marijuana is related to cognitive function, with those using cannabis unable to maintain a certain level of concentration.
Marijuana can also significantly affect mood, along with short- and long-term memory. These side effects and their long-term consequences have been debated and researched and some call into question whether marijuana poses any serious harm. However, a recent study may grab the attention of those who typically ignore the warnings about marijuana.
Recently, Rany Shamloul conducted a review of the information available regarding the connection between marijuana use and sexual health. The results indicated that there may be a strong association between cannabis and impaired male sexual performance.
Dr. Shamloul is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology at Queen’s University. The research conducted by Dr. Shamloul will appear in the Journal of Sexual Medicine.
Dr. Shamloul points out that while the drug is the most popular illicit drug, used all over the world; its use is concentrated largely among young people. The young people using marijuana may be unaware of the risks that they are heightening relating to sexual health and performance while using marijuana.
Highlighted in Dr. Shamloul’s work are several studies that have shown a connection between cannabis use and sexual dysfunction in animal models and in vitro studies. The results of these recent investigations may end the debate about whether sexual health is impacted by marijuana use.
Previous research has established that cannabis does affect certain areas of the brain, receptors that affect sexual functions. Now it is believed that the same types of receptors are present in the penis, where cannabis may cause a problem. The researchers believe that the when cannabis is present in the receptors in the penis, a man may have difficulty achieving and maintaining an erection.
The findings are significant in this area of study because it is the first investigation to provide a conclusion about marijuana’s effects on sexual health and performance. Previous research has shown mixed results regarding cannabis use and sexual health.
Some studies in the past have found that erectile function was actually improved by cannabis use, but the current findings will significantly change the understanding of cannabis use and sexual health.
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