Can THC O Help Manage Chronic Pain? The Evidence So Far

by Staff

Evidence suggests high THC marijuana strains can ease pain from various conditions and injuries. But what about hemp-derived THC O? Does this compound have the same pain-fighting properties as regular THC?

This article will explore the evidence surrounding THC-O acetate and its potential role in chronic pain management while discussing the implications for those seeking relief.

What Is THC O?

THC-O, or tetrahydrocannabinol acetate, is almost chemically identical to Delta-9 THC, the famous psychotropic compound that dominates marijuana’s trademark high. However, unlike regular THC, THCO is sold online nationwide by several brands, including Qwin’s line of delicious edibles. Visit here for THC-O syrups.

However, unlike regular THC, THCO is a synthetic cannabinoid that does not occur naturally in cannabis or hemp plants. Manufacturers typically make THCO acetate by first extracting CBD from hemp plants and converting it into Delta-8 THC. Then they add acetic anhydride, a highly flammable and colorless liquid, to convert Delta-8 into THC-O acetate.

Many people believe THC O is more potent than THC because of the attached acetate group, which makes the compound more readily absorbed by the body. THCO’s increased bioavailability may produce a more prolonged and intense psychoactive effect. However, cannabis scientists must conduct more research to determine if this is true.

THCO Effects and Benefits

THCO is an incredibly potent cannabinoid. It produces an intense high that people describe as euphoric and relaxing. Many THCO effects and benefits are in line with strong doses of Delta-9 THC, including:

●  Euphoria and mood-boosting effects

●  Increased energy and focus

●  Anxiety and stress relief

●  Mental and physical relaxation

●  Sleepiness

●  Increased appetite

●  Pain relief

Users say the THCO high is all about euphoria and provides a dramatically uplifting feeling. THCO can display stimulating effects in moderate doses, making people more talkative and energetic. Some even describe the THC-O experience as “spiritual,” expanding awareness and opening their minds to deeper, positive thoughts.

THCO also has viscerally relaxing effects in large doses that can cause intense sedation. These soothing effects lean more toward indica strains commonly used to treat pain, insomnia, and other bodily discomforts.

How THCO Works for Chronic Pain

Research, medical reviews, and survey responses suggest THC can effectively ease chronic pain. Research suggests THC works by interacting with cannabinoid receptors in the body’s endocannabinoid system, which are involved in pain perception, to modulate pain signals and reduce nerve-related sensations. As a chemically similar compound, THCO may exhibit similar therapeutic properties.

  • Pain perception: Like regular THC, THC-O mainly targets cannabinoid receptors throughout the brain and central nervous system that regulates how the body perceives pain.
  • Mood boost: A review of cannabis research in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that positive mood plays a significant role in people’s relationship to chronic pain. THC-O causes intense joy and pleasure, which helps shift people’s perception of pain intensity.

THCO Bioavailability and Potency for Chronic Pain

The “acetylation” process used to make THCO acetate is standard in the pharmaceutical industry for increasing the bioavailability of drugs. Increased bioavailability likely explains the two main factors known about THCO:

Slower effects: Chemists add acetate to protect THCO from enzymatic breakdown, increasing THC levels in the blood and brain. This process could account for the reported increased potency, delayed onset, and longer duration of effects associated with THC-O.

Increased potency: Some reports say THCO can feel up to three times stronger than Delta-9 THC. Others say the effects are not necessarily more potent but different, leaning toward relaxation, altered consciousness, and deep thoughts.

Anecdotally, some people prefer THC-O for pain relief over regular THC due to its distinguishing effects.

●  For instance, some patients have developed high THC tolerances and need something more substantial. THCO can potentially offer more significant relief.

●  In other cases, patients might feel that regular cannabis wears off too quickly and want something that stays in their system longer.

●  Some users say THCO makes them feel more energetic and clear-headed, which could help those who don’t like feeling groggy after large doses of THC for pain.

THC O Products Chronic Pain

THC-O acetate is available in many product types, including:

  • Gummies
  • Syrups
  • Beverages
  • Candies
  • Cookies
  • Vape cartridges

Users should avoid smoking or vaping THC-O because research indicates that heating this acetylated compound could form a toxic substance in the lungs. It’s uncertain if a vape cart could produce enough ketene to create immediate danger, but consumers should be cautious.

THC-O edibles like gummies, tinctures, candies, and syrups do not pose the same health risks because digestion bypasses the lungs. Additionally, edible products may be the best method to relieve pain because these products last longer than inhaled cannabis, up to eight hours. Long-lasting relief is perfect for all-day or overnight comfort.

THC O Dosing

A little goes a long way with THCO dosing.

Consumers should always start with a low dosage of THC-O, taking approximately one-third of the equivalent dose of Delta-9 THC, and then adjust the dosage as needed. For example, an experienced cannabis user who typically uses 25 mg of Delta-9 THC for chronic pain relief may begin with 7.5 mg of THC-O due to its potent effects and adjust accordingly.

The Bottom Line

THCO is one of the latest cannabinoids making headlines in the hemp industry. Clinical research is scant at this point. However, scientists know this acetylated THC compound is psychoactive, more bioavailable than regular THC, and can stay in the system longer. THC-O could be a viable option for consumers seeking a stronger alternative to the standard dispensary fare for alleviating chronic pain conditions.

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The New Jersey Digest is a new jersey magazine that has chronicled daily life in the Garden State for over 10 years.

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