Canadian study finds almost half of medical cannabis users with chronic pain stopped using opioids

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A Canadian study of patients seeking medical cannabis to treat chronic pain found that women reported more pain intensity than men and that opioid use was almost halved for those who remained in the study until the end. “Female sex was significantly associated with worse outcomes than male sex, including pain intensity and pain-related interference,” while opioid use decreased by almost half, from 40.8 per cent at baseline to 23.9 per cent at 12 months, notes the study published in the Canadian Journal of Anaesthesia. Participants in the observational study — 62 per cent of whom were female, 91 per cent of them white and 88 per cent seeking pain relief — were patients enrolled in community-based clinics in Ontario between Sept. 8, 2015 and July 31, 2018. From questionnaire responses, researchers assessed anxiety, depression, quality of life (QoL), general health symptoms, neuropathic pain, self-reported opioid consumption and adverse events. Over half of people using medical cannabis to combat chronic pain had withdrawal symptoms: study Chronic pain patients are increasingly turning to cannabis for relief Medical cannabis trial underway for Australian football players with chronic pain To get a full picture, they considered demographics, patterns of cannabis use, long-term effectiveness of cannabis on pain, pain intensity and pain-related interference scores at baseline and three, six and 12 months. Of the 757 people at baseline, that number dropped to 230 at six months and 104 at 12 months. Time was a “significant factor associated with improvement in pain intensity, pain-related interference scores, QoL and general health symptoms,” the abstract points out. The researchers acknowledged the “ significant challenges to collecting long-term observational data on patients who attempted a trial of cannabis products.” Even so, about a third of patients in the study remained on medical cannabis for six months, something that…

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Source : Canadian study finds almost half of medical cannabis users with chronic pain stopped using opioids

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