There are conflicting reports on the use of rectal cannabis. The best way to research a topic is to do it yourself. For science, journalistic integrity, and pure fun, I wrote about the results of a cannabis suppository.
I have never heard of recreational cannabis use. There are many vocal proponents of every other kind of cannabis ingestion, from internet forums to coffeeshops to living rooms. The subject of savouring a potent high has not been brought up with me. Is rectal cannabis the last taboo? Does it work? There was only one way to find it.
I have never put any drug in my nether regions. I am familiar with the concept, but never tried it.
I loved the ritual of making the perfect cone when I was a smoker. I think there is an element of ritual in rectal cannabis use. It isn’t likely to be the sort of thing you can do in a roomful of friends.
I was able to get a lab partner for my first time in this brave new world because some friends are closer to me than others.
The first step is to get some suppositories.
Cannabis suppositories are not a product that you can buy in a coffee shop or a pharmacy. I was able to get some from a source who wanted to remain anonymous. They were made from butane-extracted whole plant concentrate in a base of coconut oil and it gave them a pleasant, almost chocolatey smell. They had two grams each.
If they were taken in any way that I was familiar with they would give a psychoactive effect.
Having procured cannabis suppositories, our preparation was twofold. The latter was a research. I found some practical tips, including lying on your side and bending one leg for at least 15 minutes after the procedure.
According to anecdotal reports, music starts playing in my head about 1 minute after “dosing” and within minutes I could feel a warm, pleasant sensation washing over my entire pelvic region.
Maybe it shouldn’t work, that’s what science said.
What is the science behind using cannabis rectally?
Allan Frankel, who has researched and written about rectal absorption of cannabis, said that no one felt the effects of cannabis oil in cocoa butter. They had negligible levels of cannabinoids in their blood. The rectum does not absorb fats efficiently.
Any active substance in a suppository must first pass through the rectum and into the bloodstream before it can be absorbed. It can’t be absorbed directly by the skin.
If the active substances are intended for rectal use, they should not be combined with a fat or oily carrier as this will reduce their absorption. I found online that almost every cannabis suppository was in a fat base.
There are differences between recreational and medical cannabis.
The rectal veins – superior, middle and inferior
If some of the cannabinoid content makes it through the mucus, it then circulates through the inferior and middle rectal veins into the inferior vena cava, or through the superior rectal vein to the liver.
It was thought that the lack of psychoactivity was caused by the missing of the liver. The metabolite stays in the system for a longer period of time. It is easier to cross the blood-brain barrier. The effect of many drugs is reduced by the first pass of metabolism.
The strength of the same dose is determined by the amount of 11- OH-THC produced when cannabis is eaten. If you eat, smoke, or insert it into your rectum, the effects will be different.
The most recent research on the rectal absorption of the drug was done in 1991. These monkeys are the luckiest.
When the cannabinoid was processed to create a combination with the molecule hemisuccinate, the bioavailability shot up to 13.5% and the mean residence time of the drug in the blood was 5.8 hours. It is water-soluble, which is why it becomes mucus.
Back to my personal rectal cannabis experience
All my research was based on the idea thatanecdotes say something might happen, and science says nothing should happen. This was as far as I could get with the set.
We put mattresses on the floor of the living room to make sure there was enough food and drink. If we needed it, I had music, films, and picture books. After subjecting my lab partner to descriptions of animal experiments and rectal aqueous mucus delta 8 pre rolls, I thought I would make it as nice as possible, but fire and altered states don’t mix so I turned the lights down.
To give an accurate report, we had abstained from any other drugs and I set my phone to record the experience so I could chart the experience.
The bullets were dark green and slippery. The first lesson is to put them in as soon as possible after the fridge has been emptied. They are basically self-lubricating, which isn’t bad. I lay on my back with my lab partner.
I felt unwell after an hour. This could be the beginning of a high, or the incongruity of live-tweeting rectal cannabis use as part of my job. I tried to analyse what I was experiencing after I was asked how it was going by a follower.
There was a mild sensation around the ground zero area. I was not able to say for sure if there was any effect. My lab partner fell asleep, but he arrived in Amsterdam the next day. The data was not clear.
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One hour into the experiment: getting high
The experiment was only for research and my lab partner was still fast asleep. I felt a deep sense of relaxation, especially my legs. I believe the use of suppositories could be very effective. I decided to get up and go to the kitchen to see if the effects of the drug made themselves known.
The munchies kicked in and I noticed that the colors and patterns were enhanced. I heated up some soup. I giggled to myself when I heard that the great Dr. Lester Grinspoon had his first cannabis experience when the pizza he was eating was the best he had ever tasted.
Despite being a clearly recognisable cannabis high, what I was experiencing was different than what I have experienced in the past. My head was clear and I was alert, a type of high without the headrush or confusion.
It was enjoyable, but I was in an altered state. There were dragons in my living room. It was great to get back under the bed. I didn’t need more entertainment. There was no nausea or feelings of disassociation when you were relaxing.
An hour and a half in: definitely high
I was still feeling the same effects, which seemed to have reached a point of no return. He was not sure what. This was a huge mistake that he made. The following discussion took place.
“Is it chocolate?”
“Is it oatcakes with vegan cream cheese?”
I am having a hard time remembering what else to eat.
“I don’t think so.”
“Ooh, is it pineapple soy yogurt?”
“YES. Yes, it is. Oh yes.”
“We are definitely high.”
We ate a lot of yogurt in under three minutes. It was great. We talked about the high. It was relaxing but not strong. Lying in a warm bath that you don’t want to get out of is the best example. The muscle tension was gone.
Alert, talkative, and surprisingly fragrant
We felt warm and heavy, but not sleepy, and the effect seemed to end at the upper neck, as if you were lying in a bath with only your head out of the water. It was not acouchlock stone. We were alert and friendly. The effect was powerful but not overwhelming.
There was more than one fact that I was unaware of. During hours of research, I had not read about it. I will let you know about it. The bicyle starts to work after eating. This can cause wind to blow. If you are experimenting with rectal use of cannabis, you will smell like a growroom of strong sativas just before harvest. You’re welcome.
The following day: Still high
It was very long-term. I wasn’t expecting to be high the next morning because we both have low tolerance for cannabis. My lab partner had a big breakfast after I left for work.
By the time he told me he had woken up and could I get some more pineapple yogurt, the effects had worn off. It took him several more hours to return to normal. This is the most economical method I have tried.
The rectal use of cannabis needs more research.
What conclusions can be drawn? There is no way that we were feeling a placebo effect. I know the difference from using cannabis. I can assure you that there was a lot of marijuana in our system, even though I had no way of measuring it.
How did it get here? It is safe to assume that at least some THC entered the superior rectal vein and achieved the first pass metabolism. I wanted this to happen so I tried to keep the suppository lower in the rectum.
It is possible that the effect was so long-lived because the first pass of the drug in the bloodstream would eventually reach the body’s organs. The second phase of metabolism could take place after the initial dose.
To get to any of the rectal veins, it needs to traverse the aqueous mucus layer. This shouldn’t be possible without the presence of hemisuccinate. Is it possible that part of the process of making the butane-extracted concentrate creates a compound that can be absorbed?
Whole plant extract was not used in the monkeys’ experiments. Is the presence of other cannabinoids the key to the difference? The studies used full spectrum cannabis oil in cocoa butter didn’t work. The doctor concludes that more research is needed to take full advantage of this delivery method.
Benefits of rectal cannabis use
I can think of benefits for both recreational and medical cannabis use. Pain and muscle tension can be alleviated with the long-term deep relaxation. The delivery method means that there is no risk of vomiting up oral appetite stimulants, which is a benefit to anyone who needed to gain weight. The amount needed for an effective dose is small.
It is highly unlikely that someone will accidentally insert a cannabis suppository thinking it is a harmless treat. There are a lot of stories of people accidentally eating food. I have never heard of anyone casually placing a random suppository around.
It was not impossible to work the next day. I wouldn’t want to operate heavy machinery, but the clarity of the high was fine for writing, going to the shops, and cooking dinner. It would be ideal for people who need effective pain relief without being disabled.
What do you think?
Have you ever used marijuana? What was it like? Do you have any theories as to why experience and science are different? I would love to hear from people who know more about chemistry than I do. Let me know what you think.