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Waterpipe Study

NCJ Number
MAPS Volume: 6 Issue: 3 Dated: (Spring 1996) Pages: 59-66
D Gieringer
Date Published
8 pages
Two brief articles report on a study to determine the efficacy of various smoking devices at reducing the concentration of tars relative to cannabinoids.
The waterpipe study was motivated by concerns that marijuana smoking, like tobacco smoking, posed hazards to respiratory health. The study tested smoke from seven different sources. It focused on two key components of the smoke: total solid particulates, or tars, waste by-products of burning leaf like those from tobacco; and cannabinoids, the chemicals distinctive to marijuana, including THC, its major psychoactive ingredient. The tests disclosed that waterpipes do not necessarily protect users from harmful tars in marijuana smoke. Waterpipes filter out more THC than they do other tars, thereby requiring users to smoke more to reach their desired effect. The study does not rule out the possibility that waterpipes could have other benefits, such as filtering out gases. It suggests that other methods, such as the use of high potency marijuana, vaporizers, or oral ingestion are needed to avoid toxins in marijuana smoke. References