Medical marijuana and pain control: Study casts doubt on drug’s effectiveness

| | July 16, 2018
republican senator nothing to fear medical marijuana
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Depending on who you listen to, medical cannabis is either a rising star in the world of therapeutics or an over-vaunted pariah that should never have exited the grubby world of the illicit street corner deal.

The science, however, is decidedly patchy, plagued by poor quality studies and the challenge of giving standard doses of a drug with over 400 chemical ingredients – 60 of which are the cannabinoids implicated in pain relief, and others having opposing effects.

Published in the journal Lancet Public Health, [a new study] examined cannabis use over four years in a nationwide cohort of 1514 Australian adults with chronic non-cancer pain. Most had back or neck pain, neuropathic pain, or arthritis.

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At the four year mark, just under a quarter had used cannabis as a painkiller. Those who did, however, reported more severe pain and greater disruption to their daily lives. Users also clocked higher anxiety and were less likely to think they could carry on in spite of pain.

Further, the researchers found cannabis use bore no relation in time with changes in pain scores or level of functioning.

“Cannabis use was common in people with chronic non-cancer pain who had been prescribed opioids, but we found no evidence that cannabis use improved patient outcomes,” the authors concluded.

Read full, original post: Pain control: “no evidence” cannabis improves outcomes

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