However, in the US be aware it’s often illegal at the federal level and in most local jurisdictions, even if cannabis is legal in that state. In addition, making RSO can be dangerous — work areas need to be well-ventilated with no agents (sparks, open flames, etc.) that could ignite the solvent fumes.
Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
Controversy and copycats
Simpson claims that the only way to ensure patients have his blend of oil is for patients to produce it themselves. Simpson’s site has instructions and an FAQ. In addition to solvent, which is highly flammable, the recipe for RSO includes a number of random household items, including small containers, coffee filters , an electric rice cooker, a large fan, a stainless steel measuring cup, as well as a coffee warmer or oven. The recipe available on his website demonstrates how to produce the full 60 grams of RSO oil for a 90-day treatment period.
RSO is typically not smoked. It is applied in the following ways:
Can’t wait to try RSO to see if it’ll help me feel better
As RSO is an oil, it can be smoked or dabbed, however, it depends on what solvent was used to make it—if a highly flammable solvent was used, do not attempt to smoke or dab RSO. Always check with your budtender on how the product was created and whether or not it is safe to dab or smoke.
Compared to other forms of cannabis, RSO is great because it’s easy to make, it’s discrete and odorless, and can be taken orally on its own, or mixed with any food.
In 2003, after being diagnosed with skin cancer, Simpson did some research and heard about a study from the Journal of the National Cancer Institute in which THC was found to kill cancer cells in mice. He created the oil that would become RSO to treat his skin cancer topically. After four days, the cancerous growths had disappeared. His physician wouldn’t believe it, but Simpson was convinced of the medicinal powers of cannabis.
Each dose should be about the size of half a grain of rice and should be administered once every eight hours (morning, noon, and night); the first dose will be about ¼ drop of RSO.
Below is a recommended RSO regimen. When look for symptom relief for a condition or for medical benefits, for one patient, the goal is to gradually consume 60 grams of Rick Simpson Oil over the course of a 90-day period.
For medical patients, it is always recommended to consult your physician before starting any new treatment regimen. However, some physicians may be averse to cannabis as a course of treatment. If you decide to use RSO, proceed with caution and at your own discretion.
If making RSO at home, you must be sure to burn off all the alcohol completely. As this can be tricky and the product will not have been tested for chemicals, we recommend not smoking or dabbing RSO you make at home.
When it comes to cannabis oil, there are also medical benefits. Research has shown that some CBD oils, including those that contain THC, can help control seizures among people with epilepsy. The FDA has approved some drugs that contain CBD for seizure treatment.
RSO is not a branded product. That means there’s no one “Rick Simpson Oil” for sale. On his website, Simpson explains how to make his namesake oil. But he does not sell a version of the oil for profit.
PhoenixTears.ca: “Producing the Oil.”
Can RSO Treat Cancer?
Cannabis oils that contain THC may help control nausea and vomiting for people who are going through chemotherapy. There’s also evidence that they can treat pain and improve appetite.
Because RSO contains high levels of THC, it’s illegal to buy in many places. But in states that have legalized marijuana — either for personal use or for medical use — you can find RSO at cannabis dispensaries.
But research has not shown that RSO or other forms of cannabis oil can treat cancer. Some very early studies on using THC to treat cancer have been encouraging, though.
Iranian Journal of Psychiatry: “Chemistry, Metabolism, and Toxicology of Cannabis: Clinical Implications.”