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Study Finds Marijuana Smoke Could Cause Testicular Cancer

PHOTO Molly Haggerty


Study Finds Marijuana Smoke Could Cause Testicular Cancer

Smoking cannabis is associated with a higher risk of testicular cancer.

If you are a man who has been smoking marijuana steadily for the past 10 years or more, well, this story is probably going to be a massive kick in the Jimmy. It seems that scientific minds had the cojones to dig deep into the ramifications of long-term cannabis consumption in the male persuasion. And what they found, we shudder to report, is something that you’re probably going to need to be really high to swallow. If you’re not now, never fear, we’ll wait. All good? Okay, so, researchers have determined that long term members of the boys of the bong club are at a higher risk of testicular cancer than their non-toking counterparts. At first, we thought these people must be nuts, but it turns out that, like it or not, there might actually be something to the claim.

For those men freaking out right now, perhaps scrawling their Last Will and Testament on a package of rolling papers while combing through this column in search of the hard evidence showing that weed is giving them cancer of the balls, let us put your mind at ease. They’re small. No, not your testicles, but the risks of cancer. Researchers at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center say that it is important to keep in mind that it’s “not huge.” Again, we’re talking about the risks. 

But scientists want to make it perfectly clear that some users are in more danger than others. There is an elevated threat of testicular cancer in those men who smoke weed more than just occasionally, researchers explained in the journal JAMA. Men who have been getting stoned consistently for right around a decade are 36% more likely to end up with this dreaded disease than part-time tokers.

The study doesn’t appear to be a bunch of bollocks either. Researchers examined somewhere around 25 pieces of data spanning 50 years that touched on all sorts of cancers ranging from testicular to head and neck. But in the end, their testes revealed that the only real link between marijuana consumption and this gnarly malady was in the reproductive organs of the average man.

Yet, the study shows that only “regular users” are at risk of getting sacked. Regular use is defined by any man who smokes one joint a day. These are the ones who might want to get their package examined more frequently. And by a doctor, too. Umm. So, without getting all scientific here with our calculations — we’re too high to do it anyway — it would seem that the majority of our male readers could be well on their way to becoming one nut wonders. That said, if you are a man who smokes more marijuana than what researchers call “regular use” and still have two healthy baby-makers, you might want to buy a lottery ticket later today. You are beating the odds, kid!

The good news is there is apparently a way around all of this cancer-risk crap that supposedly comes after years of reefer chiefing greatness. Because apparently, it is not the cannabis itself that is causing men to develop tumors in their nads, but it is their chosen consumption method that’s the real culprit.

Regardless of what science has shown us in the past about how smoking pot might be safer than cigarettes, that doesn’t mean that it is entirely safe. In fact, some studies have shown that unfiltered marijuana smoke can release toxins that are 20 times more dangerous than the smoke from cigarettes.

Dr. Jeffrey Chen, the director of the UCLA Cannabis Research Initiative, told Business Insider that smoking weed (or any other plant matter) releases carcinogens that could lead to cancer. So, the way we see it, as long as men can find another means for consumption (edibles, pills, etc.) other than smoking, the chances of their boys needing chemo are going to diminish exponentially.

The other good news that comes with this study is that the older a man gets, the less risk he has for testicular cancer. So if you are the kind of dude that has been smoking weed since before he was old enough to drive, avoiding any problems with this disease thus far, you might be in the clear.

Although more than 8,000 men are diagnosed each year with cancerous bags, its primary targets are younger males between the ages of 15 and 35. But then again, on the flip side, young smokers might want to keep this in mind as we move toward a time when cannabis is more prevalent in our society. Because while getting high is a lot of fun, having one of your balls removed is never a good time. Fortunately, the survival rate of this disease is excellent, with 99% of the men diagnosed making it out alive. Still, many survivors often emerge with only one testicle. And that, dare we say, sucks you know what. 

TELL US, are you concerned about the potential health impacts associated with smoking marijuana?

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