Cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome: a case series and review of previous reports

Psychosomatics. May-Jun 2012;53(3):212-9. doi: 10.1016/j.psym.2012.01.003. Epub 2012 Apr 4.


Background: Cannabis is the most commonly used illicit substance worldwide. Cannabinoids or cannabinoid receptor agonists are often used to treat nausea, vomiting, and anorexia. However, in recent years, several medical journals have published reports of patients with nausea and vomiting thought to be induced by chronic cannabis use.

Objective: The authors seek to inform readers about Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS).

Method: The authors describe four patients with chronic cannabis abuse, episodic, intractable nausea and vomiting, and compulsive hot water bathing. Previous cases of CHS are reviewed, pathophysiology is hypothesized, and difficulties with making the diagnosis are discussed.

Conclusion: CHS should be strongly considered in the differential diagnosis of patients with intractable vomiting and/or compulsive hot water bathing.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Pain / chemically induced
  • Adult
  • Back Pain / drug therapy
  • Baths / psychology
  • Cannabinoids / adverse effects*
  • Chronic Disease
  • Compulsive Behavior / chemically induced*
  • Compulsive Behavior / diagnosis
  • Compulsive Behavior / psychology
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Hot Temperature
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Marijuana Abuse / complications*
  • Nausea / chemically induced*
  • Nausea / diagnosis
  • Pain Management
  • Syndrome
  • Vomiting / chemically induced*
  • Vomiting / diagnosis
  • Young Adult


  • Cannabinoids