Cannabis-Based Treatment for Chronic Pain

This week, KannAInsight features a new study on cannabis-based products for the treatment of chronic pain.    

Chronic pain is ongoing or recurrent pain that persists beyond the normal course of acute injury or illness and usually lasts for 3 to 6 months. It is a common health issue, affecting approximately 20% of the population. Chronic pain conditions include headache, back pain, arthritis, fibromyalgia, and more. No single treatment is guaranteed to produce complete pain relief. However, several treatments options may be used in combination to alleviate chronic pain, including medications, supplements, and herbal remedies.

New research suggests that a cannabis-based treatment may benefit individuals with chronic pain conditions. Over the course of twelve weeks, researchers evaluated the effectiveness, tolerability, and safety of an oromucosal spray (optimal dose 8-12 sprays per day) containing THC and CBD as an add-on treatment in 800 patients with severe chronic pain.

At the end of the treatment period, more than half of the patients reported experiencing greater than 50% improvement in some or all pain symptoms, including stress, pain intensity, depression, overall well-being, anxiety, sleep, and quality of life. Notably, THC:CDB treatment was well-tolerated, with the most commonly experienced adverse effects being a “bad taste” and increased appetite.

The results of this study suggest that using a THC:CBD oromucosal spray, in addition to their regularly prescribed pain management regimen, may provide some symptom relief for patients suffering from chronic pain conditions.

Citation: Ueberall MA, Essner U, Mueller-Schwefe GHH. Effectiveness and tolerability of THC:CBD oromucosal spray as add-on measure in patients with severe chronic pain: Analysis of 12-week open-label real-world data provided by the German Pain e-Registry. Journal of Pain Research. 2019 May 20; 12: 1577-1604.

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