Chronic Pain Sufferers Helped by Marijuana

MONTREAL, Sept. 1 (UPI) — Marijuana, or cannabis, may be an effective treatment for chronic pain, a Canadian researcher suggests.

Dr. Mark Ware of the McGill University Health Center and McGill University in Montreal says marijuana may offer relief to patients suffering from chronic neuropathic pain.

The study, published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, not only finds medical marijuana at a low dose offered modest pain reduction in patients suffering from chronic neuropathic pain, but also improved patients’ mood and improved sleep. Effects were less pronounced in marijuana strains containing less than 10 percent of the active ingredient tetrahydrocannabinol.

“The patients we followed suffered from pain caused by injuries to the nervous system from post-traumatic — e.g. traffic accidents — or post-surgical — e.g. cut nerves — events, and which was not controlled using standard therapies,” Ware says in a statement. “This kind of pain occurs more frequently than many people recognize, and there are few effective treatments available. For these patients, medical cannabis is sometimes seen as their last hope.”

Ware and colleagues conducted trials in which patients who smoked marijuana at home — using a pipe three times daily over a period of five days — were monitored daily for their responses.

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