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Moose 07/11/2011
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THC Receptors in Penis Explained

Resized ImageFor the past ten years, sex has been somewhat of a battleground in the war on drugs, with establishment types claiming marijuana causes sexual dysfunction and supporters saying it actually increased sexual enjoyment. Neither side has been able to produce much evidence up until now.

A new study from The Journal of Sexual Medicine is finally shining some light on the issue, even if the jury is still out for now.

Marijuana and Sexual Dysfunction Linked

The study, which was released in January of 2011, reports that regular users of marijuana, especially those who enjoy it at high levels, are 200% more likely to experience sexual dysfunction than people who do not use marijuana. Sexual dysfunction includes erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation.

This has something to do with THC receptors that researchers found in the penises of human and ape subjects. This is considered a breakthrough, as it was previously not known that THC-the main desired compound in cannabis – could create a biological reaction outside the brain. Receptors show that chemical dependency is possible.
These receptors are thought by doctors to have the potential to disrupt erections by being present in the penis’s smooth muscle tissue. As much as 80% of the penis is made of smooth muscle tissue.

Medical Disputes

Some doctors have spoken out saying that these receptors are interesting, but not the reason there is a relationship between cannabis and sexual dysfunction. Some believe that marijuana causes a hormonal reaction in the body, which influences nervous sensation and transmission. This means that sexual impulses would not be properly communicated between the brain and genitals.

Blood pressure issues are another concern if marijuana is used heavily over a long period of time.
However, many more doctors insist that this news of THC receptors likely explains why marijuana causes ED, if indeed it does at all!
It is equally likely, one doctor said, that marijuana users engage in other activities that cause erectile dysfunction. As examples, she lists overeating, lack of exercise, and sleep deprivation.

What’s remarkable about this research?

The ED implications are perhaps overshadowed by the realization that marijuana is more addictive than first thought. While it is nowhere near as dangerous as cigarettes and alcohol, it is definitely possible to develop addiction, and THC receptors are proof of this. Receptors around the body are also evidence that cannabis may have other long-term effects on the body.

However, the researchers themselves are quick to point out that there is much more study to be done before they can draw definitive conclusions.

Other Reports Conflict

Medical marijuana advocates vehemently contest the claim that marijuana causes ED. They say that these studies are not medically relevant, and they have a point. The numbers of test subjects involved in the study are hardly impressive, as just 15 humans and rhesus monkeys combined were found with THC receptors.

Even if it does cause ED, one advocate told me, “it is such a small thing compared to the good. Just take Viagra!”

Indeed, Viagra is an easy solution to the occasional ED possibly involved. Viagra is known to work against ED as a side effect of other drugs as well.

Source: http://www.joelpalsson.com/guest-post ... ptors-in-penis-explain-ed
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