Researchers at the University of Sydney have secured state government funding to determine whether CBD can reduce neuropathic pain in spinal cord injury patients.
The research team plan to conduct a clinical trial in which cannabidiol is given to patients with spinal cord injury-induced chronic pain to determine if it can have a positive impact on their condition. The first part of the study will compare brain images of individuals who develop chronic pain after spinal cord injury to those who do not to determine underlying brain changes responsible for chronic neuropathic pain.
In the second part of the study, a randomised, double-blind placebo-controlled study will be used to investigate CBD’s ability to reduce pain.
According to Spinal Cord Injuries Australia, there is anecdotal evidence that medicinal cannabis can shut down the sensation of pain in some patients and help others to disassociate themselves from it and relax.
The new study will rigorously test these claims.
The team includes Professor Iain McGregor and Dr Elizabeth Cairns from the Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics at the University of Sydney.
The NSW government funding is part of a $15million scheme supporting seven research projects to improve the health of people with spinal cord injuries.