Cannabis For Chronic Pain: Case Series And Implications For Clinicians

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Source: Pain Research & Management - Canadian Pain Society, Summer 2002, Volume 7, Number 2: 95-99


MA Ware, A Gamsa, J Persson, M-A Fitzcharles


Background: Chronic pain is one of the most common reasons
for therapeutic cannabis use.


Objectives: To describe therapeutic cannabis use among
patients with chronic pain.


Methods: Patients with chronic pain who voluntarily indicated that they used cannabis therapeutically completed a questionnaire about the type of cannabis used, the mode of administration, the amount used and the frequency of use, and their perception of the effectiveness of cannabis on a set of pain-associated symptoms and side effects. The study was approved by the McGill University Health Centre Research Ethics Board.


Results: Fifteen patients (10 male) were interviewed (median age 49.5 years, range 24 to 68 years). All patients smoked herbal cannabis for therapeutic reasons (median duration of use six years, range two weeks to 37 years).

Seven patients only smoked at night-time (median dose eight puffs, range two to eight puffs), and eight patients used cannabis mainly during the day (median dose three puffs, range two to eight puffs); the median frequency of use was four times per day (range one to 16 times per day).

Twelve patients reported improvement in pain and mood, while
11 reported improvement in sleep. Eight patients reported a 'high'; six denied a 'high'. Tolerance to cannabis was not reported.


Conclusions: The results of this self-selected case series must be interpreted with caution. Small doses of smoked cannabis may improve pain, mood and sleep in some patients with chronic pain. Clinical trials are warranted to test these effects. Further prospective studies should examine the patterns and prevalence of cannabis use among chronic pain populations.

Source: Cannabis for Chronic Pain: Case Series and Implications for Clinicians
 
I find that different species of plant give different pain relief results, also it very much depends on where the pain is. I broke the base of my spine, the pain is Comes in spasms and can be excruciating at times. The pain was so bad I was prescribed morphine. FDA approved medication such as morphine has more addictive qualities and long term side effects than that of cannabis. I tried different types of cannabis but in truth it was only the cheese varieties that actually gave total relief and enabled me to walk again. I also since my accident ( I was on a zip wire that failed, caused me to crash into a rock at 120km per hours, both feet smashed, broke both legs, trauma to whole spine and a break at the bottom) The accident caused epilepsy which was quite severe. Since smoking cannabis twice daily my epilepsy is fully under control and I do not take FDA approved meds. To test if this was a coincidence I did not smoke cannabis for 6 days and the epilepsy started again with 6 attacks per day, after smoking one cheese cannabis filled cig no more bouts of epilepsy. I have tried other species of cannabis but the results are much weaker.