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When to Stop Taking CBD Oil Before Surgery [2023 Update]

When to Stop Taking CBD Oil Before Surgery [2023 Update]

Enjoying the anti-anxiety and anti-inflammatory benefits of CBD? That's awesome. But you're probably wondering, is it safe to take CBD before surgery? The answer is a bit complex, and even experts don't fully agree. But don't worry, we've got you covered.

While CBD can potentially make your hospital stay more comfortable, there's a lot more to consider. Surgery is a complicated process, and incorporating CBD into your pre-surgery routine requires careful thought. (Click to tweet)

Collaboration with your healthcare provider is crucial to determine if CBD before or after surgery fits into your game plan for managing anxiety, pain, and inflammation.

1. Taking CBD Oil Before Surgery: The Most Important Factor 

Let's kick things off with the golden rule: always, always let your medical team know about your CBD and cannabis usage. This is especially vital for your surgeon and anesthesiologist. These are the people who'll be making real-time decisions about your health, so arm them with all the info they need.

Taking CBD Oil Before Surgery: The Most Important Factor

RELATED: The Potential Benefits of CBD Products for Inflammation

2. Benefits and Risks: CBD, Surgery, and Concomitant Medications

Are there any guidelines as to who should really avoid taking CBD before surgery, though? Yup, and they’re pretty simple—if you are on any anticoagulant, you should completely avoid consuming CBD or any cannabis-related product long before getting operated on. (Click to tweet)

Check this out:

Here’s why, according to Jason Brett, writing for CBD Oil Review: 

"Broad spectrum CBD, or full spectrum CBD oil in particular, may be a useful tool in preventing thrombosis, or the formation of blood clots. A study on the anticoagulant effects of cannabis found the cannabinoids tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabinol (CBN) to be effective anti-thrombotics, doubling the amount of time it took for blood clots to form in obese and lean rat test subjects compared to the control group." [1]

RELATED: A Holistic Approach to Pain Management

In simpler terms—research shows that CBD is a mild blood thinner. The effects of CBD could potentially exacerbate bleeding during and after surgery and slow down wound healing, especially if you suffer from any clotting disorder.

Cannabidiol furthermore gets metabolized via the same liver pathways as most prescription anti-coagulants. This effect is dose-dependent, but it can affect the potency of the drug. (Research has shown that CBD increases serum warfarin, which could prove fatal.) [2]

Therefore, if you’re taking prescription blood thinners, always consult with your doctor to confirm that it is safe to use CBD. They will most likely insist on regular blood checks, as CBD and cannabis can decrease the degradation of warfarin in your body, and doses should be adjusted accordingly. If not, it could cause serious complications that would put your health—even your life—at risk.

RELATED: CBD Interactions with Prescription Drugs

Here’s something to remember:

If you are taking CBD together with any chronic medicine (especially those with a risk of drug-drug interaction), the rule of thumb should be to consult with your doctor for guidance days before uptake for surgery or any other hospital procedure. (Click to tweet)

The rule of thumb should be to consult with your doctor for guidance, days before uptake for surgery or any other hospital procedure.

3. What You Need to Know: CBD and Anesthesia Interactions

Anesthesia is a serious matter. It involves administering potent medications that temporarily paralyze your body—hence the need for ventilators, as you won't be able to breathe on your own while "under the knife." Interfering with this carefully calibrated process is not something you want to risk.

This is important:

For this reason, patients are always advised to disclose any chronic supplements and medication they take well before surgery, including cannabis and related products.

RELATED: How Useful Is CBD Oil for Pain Management?

4. CBD Before Surgery: When to Stop Taking CBD / Cannabis

If you're not on any long-term meds, things are a bit more straightforward. But remember, these guidelines aren't a substitute for your doctor's advice.

The Royal Victoria hospital recommends the following times for stopping any cannabis product prior to surgery:

CBD Oil (Tinctures, Capsules/Softgels, and CBD Gummies): 

  • Oral Dosing/Ingested: Stop 4hrs before surgery.

Cannabis / Marijuana use: 

  • Smoked/Vaporized: Stop 12hrs before surgery.
  • Ingested (edibles, etc.): Stop 12hrs before surgery.

Another doctor responder for the HelloMD forum sends this notice to her patients:

“If you ever do end up with surgery, you must discontinue your CBDs and your vitamin D3 approximately 48 hours before surgery. Both CBD and vitamin D thin the blood so typically surgeons would like to have you off anything that thins your blood for 48hrs before surgery. You may start in both medications again after surgery, typically when you’re released from the hospital.” [4]

Here’s more:

Yet another doctor, the Chief Medical Officer of HelloMD, says this on the same forum:

“There should be no issue with you taking CBD the day before surgery unless you are on blood thinners. CBD could perhaps prolong your bleeding time. As an anti-inflammatory, it may even help with your wound healing. Depending on the time of your surgery, I would make sure that if you are taking a capsule that you observe the instructions by whoever calls you from the hospital regarding what time to stop eating and drinking fluids. You should not take the CBD after that time either. For post-operative pain, you might want to consider using a 1:1 CBD: THC ratio CBD dosage instead of an opioid, if one is prescribed by your surgeon. I would also let them know that you are taking it as well.” [4]

CBD Before Surgery: When to Stop Taking CBD / Cannabis

RELATED: Preparing For Surgery: Why Knowing When To Stop Taking CBD Is Crucial

5. CBD After Surgery: How Soon Can I use CBD oil again?

The topic of resuming CBD use after surgery is a nuanced one, especially since individual responses to CBD are varied and research is still evolving. Some believe that it may speed up recovery, but is it safe?
The most vital factor is always to consult with your healthcare provider for personalized advice tailored to your specific medical condition and any medications you may be taking. Now, let's dive into some general considerations about using CBD after surgery:

Why The Concern?

After surgery, your body goes through a complex healing process that can be affected by various factors, including medications and supplements. Since CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system and can influence various physiological processes, it's essential to know how it might interact with your post-surgical condition or any other medications you're taking.

Interactions with Medications

If you're given prescription medications after your surgery, such as opioids for pain or antibiotics to prevent infection, it's crucial to understand how CBD might interact with these drugs. Some medications may have their effects intensified or reduced when taken alongside CBD. (Click to tweet)

Inflammation and Pain Relief

CBD is often celebrated for its potential anti-inflammatory properties. While it's tempting to consider CBD as an alternative or supplementary pain relief method post-surgery, it's essential to consult with your healthcare provider. (Click to tweet)

You'll need to discuss the best options for managing your pain and inflammation after surgery, considering your full medical history and the specifics of your surgical procedure.

Blood Thinning Properties

Another key consideration is CBD's potential as a mild blood thinner, which might influence your body's ability to form clots. This is a crucial part of the healing process post-surgery. If you're already on blood-thinning medications, the interactions could be complex and potentially risky.

General Guidelines

As a rule of thumb, some healthcare providers advise patients to wait at least 48 hours after surgery before resuming any medications or supplements, including CBD. However, each individual and surgery is different, and this timeline can vary.

The Bottom Line

Consulting with your healthcare provider is the safest route to determine when it's appropriate for you to start using CBD again after surgery. They can provide advice based on your specific situation, taking into account your overall health, the nature of the surgery, and any other medications you're taking.

By approaching CBD use after surgery with caution and armed with expert advice, you can make informed choices that support your overall wellness journey.

CBD After Surgery: How Soon Can You use CBD oil again?

6. Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Why is it important to disclose CBD use to my healthcare provider before surgery?
    Your healthcare provider needs to have a complete picture of your health and any substances you're taking, including CBD. This is critical for avoiding any possible complications during surgery, especially related to anesthesia and post-operative recovery.

  2. What are some potential complications if I take CBD prior to surgery?
    CBD can potentially interfere with certain medications used during surgery, including blood thinners. It may also affect how your body responds to anesthesia. Informing your medical team can help them make adjustments to your care as needed.

  3. Can I continue using CBD if I'm not on any other medications?
    While CBD generally has a good safety profile, its interactions during surgery aren't fully understood. Even if you aren't taking other medications, consult your healthcare provider for personalized advice.

  4. How long should I abstain from taking CBD before surgery?
    The Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre advises stopping oral CBD at least 4 hours before surgery and smoked/vaporized cannabis 12 hours before. Always consult with your healthcare provider for guidelines tailored to your specific needs.

  5. How about using CBD topicals before surgery?
    The article doesn't cover this, but applying CBD topically could also be a concern, especially if you are undergoing a surgical procedure close to the application site. There's a potential for localized bleeding or interactions with other surgical preparations.

  6. What are the guidelines for resuming CBD use post-surgery?
    It’s generally advised to wait at least 48 hours before resuming CBD, but this may vary based on your condition and medications you might be taking post-surgery. Your healthcare provider will offer the most accurate advice tailored to your situation.

  7. Can CBD interact with post-operative medications?
    Yes, CBD has the potential to interact with a range of medications, including antibiotics and opioids commonly prescribed after surgery. Consult your healthcare provider to ensure that resuming CBD won't interfere with your post-operative treatment.

  8. What if I've used other cannabis products like THC before surgery?
    Just like with CBD, it's crucial to disclose any use of THC or other cannabinoids to your healthcare provider, as they might interact differently with medications or anesthesia used during surgery.

  9. Can I use CBD for post-surgery pain relief?
    While CBD is known for its potential anti-inflammatory properties, consult your healthcare provider to discuss the best options for managing pain post-surgery, considering your full medical history and surgical specifics.

  10. Are there studies about the effects of CBD in surgical contexts?
    The research is limited but growing. Various studies have explored the potential interactions between CBD and medications or its effects on conditions like inflammation, but more targeted research is needed to fully understand its implications in surgical settings.

7. In Summary

The relationship between CBD, cannabis, hospitals, and surgery is complicated and not fully understood—mostly because research in this area is still limited.

The Bottom Line:

When it comes to deciding whether or not to take CBD prior to scheduled surgery, the safest course of action is to have an open conversation with your healthcare provider and fully disclose any CBD or cannabis products you've been using.

Note: This article is designed for educational purposes and should not replace professional medical advice. Always consult with your healthcare provider for personalized medical guidance on what you can, and cannot take before surgery.




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