Respiratory risks of cannabis

The Thoracic Society of Australia & New Zealand has slammed smoking cannabis because of its respiratory risks.

The THC in cannabis is proven to cause cancer.

Carbon monoxide levels are five times higher after smoking just one cannabis joint than a cigarette.

Tar levels are four times greater from one cannabis joint than from one cigarette.

Cannabis smoke inflames airways, induces chronic bronchitis is mutagenic and causes cancer of the tongue and lungs.

The effects accumulate on lung and respiratory functions the longer a user smokes cannabis.

Respiratory ill health will increase if cannabis consumption increases in the community.

The Society recommends that every step should be taken to discourage cannabis smoking.

(Source: Respiratory Health Effects of Cannabis, Taylor & Hall, Internal Medicine Journal, 2003: 33)


The medical practitioners of the Thoracic Society warn about the known medical problems of cannabis use.

Other scientific research indicates that cannabis smoking is MORE dangerous than cigarette smoking particularly for cancer.

In Australia use of cannabis is increasing so the likely respiratory, cancer and other problems are likely to increase as well.

The only workable solution proven by other overseas countries is to reduce the number of cannabis users and to prevent new users.