University of California Davis researchers have revealed that smoking marijuana may reduce intensity of pain in patients with nerve pain.
In the study involving thirty-eight patients, researchers examined whether marijuana produces analgesia for patients with neuropathic pain.
The subjects were given either high-dose (7 pct), low-dose (3.5pct) or placebo cannabis.
They found that identical levels of analgesia were produced at each, oth high and low dose of cannabis.
As with opioids, cannabis does not rely on a relaxing or tranquilizing effect, but reduces the core component of nociception and the emotional aspect of the pain experience to an equal degree.
There were undesirable consequences observed from cannabis smoking, such as feeing high or impaired, but they did not inhibit tolerability. In general, side effects and mood changes were inconsequential.
In addition, the authors said further research could probe whether adding the lowest effective dose of cannabis to another analgesic drug might lead to more effective neuropathic pain treatment for patients who otherwise are treatment-resistant.
The new study appears in The Journal of Pain.