Nearly one third of people with chronic pain turn to cannabis – study

Nearly one third of people with chronic pain turn to cannabis – study
Cannabis Health News

Almost a third of patients with chronic pain reported using cannabis to manage it, according to new findings from the US.  As more US states legalise cannabis for medical and recreational use, increasing numbers of people are experimenting with it for pain relief, a new study shows. A team of researchers at the University of Michigan surveyed a representative sample of 1,724 adults with chronic pain living in 36 states with legal access to cannabis for medicinal purposes. According to their findings, three in 10 people reported using cannabis to manage their pain. Most who did so, reported substituting cannabis in place of other pain medications including prescription opioids. More than half of the adults surveyed reported that cannabis had led to a decrease in their use of pain medications, including prescription opioids and over-the-counter analgesics.  Cannabis also affected the use of other non-drug related pain relief methods to various degrees. Some people indicated that cannabis led them to turn less often to techniques that many clinical guidelines recommend as first-line therapies such as physical therapy and cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), while others with chronic pain increased their use of such treatments. Among participants 38.7% reported that their use of cannabis led to decreased use of physical therapy and 26% reported it led to decreased use of CBT. When asked about their use of meditation, 19% reported it led to decreased use of the practice, while 23.7% reported it led to increased use. The researchers say that the high degree of substitution of cannabis with both opioid and non-opioid treatment emphasises the importance of research to clarify the effectiveness and potential adverse consequences of cannabis for chronic pain.   “Our results suggest that state cannabis laws have enabled access to cannabis as an analgesic treatment despite knowledge gaps in use as…

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Source : Nearly one third of people with chronic pain turn to cannabis – study

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