September 6, 2010 – A Canadian study reported that people who are experiencing chronic pain took a puff of marijuana thrice a day. The effect was a mild pain relief, without them getting high. The same was done to patients suffering from persistent nerve damage and who were somewhat unresponsive to pain medications. They inhaled marijuana and reported better sleep and less anxiety as a result.
According to Dr. Mark A. Ware, the study made was one of the first clinical trials that are randomly controlled to test the pain-relieving capacity of smoked marijuana, as well as tetrahydrocannabinol which is its active ingredient. Dr Ware is a pain researcher at McGill University, Montreal. He was the lead author of the study paper which was published in The Canadian Medical Association Journal.
The study involved 21 adult volunteers who are experiencing severe pain. They were tested with three different formulations of marijuana. These formulations had different levels of THC, along with a placebo version (without THC). Each formulation was compared as to what effect it will give to the subjects. The cannabis with 9.4% THC, the highest concentration, delivered a great reduction in pain. There were no significant differences in the pain felt with the lesser concentrations.
Reported side effects included dry mouth and dizziness, and an occasional euphoria.