In a groundbreaking study to be conducted in the Greater Manchester region of Britain, cancer patients will be provided with a spray medicine made up of cannabis in order to relieve their sufferings.
The cannabis based drug, known as Sativex, is already available for patients with multiple sclerosis and though smaller studies have been conducted to test their effectiveness among cancer patients, this will be the first time that a large scale study is being conducted by a hospital.
Initially the study will involve patients at the North Manchester General Hospital and Fairfield General Hospital in Bury but will later on expand to include hospitals in North America, Latin America and Asia.
Pennine Acute Trust's Senior Research Nurse Sam Jole said that the study will be the first to make use of such a large number of patients and look at providing relief from pain rather than researching for cure.
"The majority of cancer research is focused on curing disease. Palliative care is an under-researched medical specialty and the SPRAY III studies are genuinely ground-breaking. I've been a research nurse for years and have never come across anything like it", he said.