Skip to content
Smoking Pot Decreases Neuropathic Pain
cweinbl posted:
A new Canadian research study reports that smoking high-THC cannabis reduces neuropathic pain. This recently-published report in the Canadian Medical Association Journal suggests that smoking marijuana, or "pot," can reduce symptoms of pain, improve mood, and aid sleep in patients with chronic neuropathic pain. However, this study actually provides only a smidgen of valid evidence and much more research is needed before patients are advised to "light up" for better pain relief.

Read the entire article here: .

It is known that THC, the active ingredient in cannabis, binds with opiate receptors in the brain. So, it should come as no surprise that the qualitatively higher THC content in this study results in significant pain reduction. That the participants report a feeling of "caring less" about their pain might present an added effect, which should be further studied.

Another area of interest is whether oral THC (Marinol) has the same beneficial effect. Many people today use Marinol off-label for chronic nociceptive and neuropathic pain. An obvious area of interest for future research should be to explore any difference in efficacy between inhaled and ingested THC. A confounding factor might be the dozens of chemicals that enter the bloodstream when cannabis is smoked, compared with the single chemical associated with ingestion (THC). It is possible that some of the added chemicals associated with inhaling the drug are also beneficial to pain relief. And, of course, inhaled THC reaches peak plasma level much more swiftly than ingested THC. Might this alter the patient's perception of the quality of pain relief?

Tens of thousands of people have reported a decrease in pain associated with cannabis intake. This study only reinforces that belief. Unfortunately, this study used a rather small population. While the number of participants, particularly those using the highest THC content remains low, the results still appear statistically significant to some extent. Hopefully, future research will use much larger populations and will attend to the efficacy of oral THC, in addition to the inhaled option.
Was this Helpful?
21 of 31 found this helpful
tofucookie responded:
if only it were legal here in virginia. it is in maryland.... maybe i need to find still another doc! currently i know of a pain patient who self-medicated with homegrown variety and is now facing jail sentence. sad, isn't it?
cweinbl replied to tofucookie's response:
Marinol IS legal. Ask your doctor for a Rx. The active ingredeint is THC.
DoinTimeOnEarth replied to cweinbl's response:
Yes It Does! as well as with headaches, sleep, and despair
NavalVeteran replied to cweinbl's response:
Yes is is legal, but good luck finding an insurance company that will pay for it, as from what I hear, the price is sky high (no oun inteneded).
NavalVeteran replied to tofucookie's response:
I live in Missouri, and with all the Baptist, I find it almost imposable that it would ever be approved, for medicinal use. I can remember when not a single store was allowed to be open on Sundays, grocery stores included. Yet it has all changed now (thank God), they even changed the law that did not allow alcohol to be purchased on Election Day, like that would change your mind about who to vote for (lol).
cweinbl replied to NavalVeteran's response:
Remember, you can obtain an Rx for THC, called Marinol (Elan Pharmaceuticals). I tried it once, a few years ago. Ask your doctor. You have nothing to lose. My insurance paid twice; no questions asked.

Spotlight: Member Stories

Central canal stenosis, three massive disc herniations (two lumbar, one cervical, starting at age 17), four failed spine surgeries, including multilev...More

Helpful Tips

Naloxone ?Reboots? Opioid Pain-Relief System
Research has suggested potential benefits of using low-doses of the opioid antagonist naloxone to "reboot" the body's natural ... More
Was this Helpful?
7 of 14 found this helpful

Related Drug Reviews

  • Drug Name User Reviews

Report Problems With Your Medications to the FDA

FDAYou are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.