Study: Marijuana is “Safe and Highly Effective” for Treating Neuropathic Pain and Concomitant Sleep Disturbance

Medical cannabis “is safe and highly effective for treating neuropathic pain and concomitant sleep disturbance”, states a new study.

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Titled Medical Cannabis Alleviates Chronic Neuropathic Pain Effectively and Sustainably without Severe Adverse Effect: A Retrospective Study on 99 Cases, the study was published in the peer-reviewed journal Medical Cannabis and Cannabinoids, and it was published online by the US National Library of Medicine. It was conducted by researchers at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf in Germany and The University of Gothenburg in Sweden.

Medical cannabis may provide a treatment option for chronic neuropathic pain. However, empirical disease-specific data are scarce”, states the study.

For this retrospective observational study, 99 patients with chronic neuropathic pain were given “medical cannabis by means of inhaling dried flowers with tetrahydrocannabinol content of <12-22% at a maximal daily dose of 0.15-1 g.”

Up to six follow-ups were carried out at intervals of 4-6 weeks. Pain severity, sleep disturbance, general improvement, side effects, and therapy tolerance at the follow-up consultations were assessed in interviews and compared with the baseline data using non-parametric Wilcoxon signed-rank test.

“Within 6 weeks on the therapy, median of the pain scores decreased significantly from 7.5 to 4.0”, found researchers. “The proportion of patients with severe pain (score >6) decreased from 96% to 16%. Sleep disturbance was significantly improved with the median of the scores decreased from 8.0 to 2.0.”

These improvements “were sustained over a period of up to 6 months”, and “There were no severe adverse events reported.”

Mild side effects reported were dryness in mucous tissue (5.4%), fatigue (4.8%), and increased appetite (2.7%). Therapy tolerance was reported in 91% of the interviews.

Researchers conclude by stating that “Medical cannabis is safe and highly effective for treating neuropathic pain and concomitant sleep disturbance.”

You can find the full text of the study by clicking here.

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