Scientists at Duke University have found that cannabis may have the ability to affect genes in both male rodents and human beings. Two important pathways have been found to be altered by cannabis consumption. These findings add to the body of evidence related to cannabis and the human reproductive system. So what happens to sperm in men who consume cannabis?
The investigation was done in two parts. The first part analysed the sperm of rates who had been dosed with THC versus those who had not. Thereafter a study was conducted on men: one group comprised of weekly weed smokers and the control group who had only smoked a few times (never in the past year).
In both the animal and human studies, there were variations in the sperm, which raises a question as to whether the use of cannabis recreationally can affect sperm in men who consume cannabis.
Previous studies found a potential increase in risk factors related to reproduction with cannabis use. A 2015 study suggested that cannabis use can decrease sperm count, and even lower female fertility. The plant has also been found to delay or even prevent orgasm in men.
Not All Bad News
Not every scientific experiment has shown detrimental effects to one’s sex life, though. A 60 000-person survey found that women who use cannabis reported to having 34% more sex, while their male counterparts reported a 22% greater frequency in coitus. Some data analysis even suggests that places where medical cannabis is legal often has increased birth rates.
But before you freak out about the study results, it is important to note that sample size of the study was relatively small, and there was no control for the concentration of THC smoked. It is important to not skew the results or turn them into something that they’re not. The study was not intended to scare people, but as researchers, the objective is to learn more about biology and what happens to sperm in men who consume cannabis.