Researchers in Germany have found medicinal cannabis to be an effective and fast-acting treatment for neuropathic pain, with fewer side-effects than conventional medicines.
Cannabis Health News reports the retrospective study analysed 99 patients aged 20 to 81 suffering from chronic neuropathic pain who were prescribed cannabis by specialist doctors. Most consumed flower with a THC content between 12-22% and a maximum daily dose of up to 1g.
Pain intensity, sleep disorders, general condition, side effects and therapy tolerance were assessed at six follow-up examinations via verbal interviews and compared to baseline.
Cannabis was not only found to be effective in treating neuropathic pain and its accompanying sleep disorders, but significant pain relief was observed within a few weeks, lasting until the end of the study period.
No serious side effects were reported, with 91% of participants stating the medicine was well tolerated.
At the start of treatment, the majority of patients had severe pain with an average reported ‘pain score’ of 7.5 out of 10 while 96% reported a score greater than six.
At the first follow-up visit, within six weeks of treatment starting, the new average was 3.75 while 90% of patients reported an improvement in their general condition.
And at the end of the study, over the entire six-month observation period, 97 out of the 99 patients reported an improvement in their general condition during one or more follow-up appointments.
No serious adverse events were reported. Minor side effects included dry mouth (5.4%), tiredness (4.8%) and increased appetite (2.7%).