A new study has revealed what patients prefer to manage pain – Cannabis, more patients prefer medical marijuana for pain relief.
The researchers found that patients believe that marijuana is very effective for their pain relief, and can replace opioids as their main source of pain relief.
“This study can conclude that medical cannabis patients report successfully using cannabis along with or as a substitute for opioid-based pain medication,” the team reported in the journal Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research.
“Patients in this study who are using cannabis and opioids report that they are able to use less opioids and that cannabis presents less unwanted side effects than their opioid-based medication.”
The researchers, from University of California Berkeley and Kent State University emailed participants and questioned them about their pain and opioid and marijuana usage.
Out of 2,801 participants who were using cannabis for pain relief, 828 had also used opioids in the last six months.
Of that group, “97 percent of the sample ‘strongly agreed/agreed’ that they are able to decrease the amount of opioids they consume when they also use cannabis. In addition, 89 percent ‘strongly agreed/agreed’ that taking opioids produces unwanted side effects such as constipation and nausea,” the researchers wrote.
However, interestingly researchers also found “81 percent ‘strongly agreed/agreed’ that taking cannabis by itself was more effective at treating their condition than taking cannabis with opioids”.
You can see the result from the graph below.
Although opioids are very effective at pain relief, nearly 100 people a day are dying from abusive opioid usage according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Although marijuana is not a perfect fix, there has been no reported deaths from marijuana overdose.
Unfortunately, the study conducted leaves a lot to be desired. The reporting was all personal which can increase the chances of bias, also data was taken from HelloMD, an online community for medical cannabis patients. The people in that community were more likely to have had positive effects from using marijuana in the past.
However, the study is still interesting as it shows that many people prefer marijuana over opioids for pain relief.