October 25, 2020

The Editor Speaks: Cannabis – myths, truths, studies and research

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We have published two articles today about cannabis/ganja/marijuana/weed

Whatever you want to call cannabis there are even more questions whether it is good for you or bad.

One article pronounces that a four year Australian study of 1,500 people found no evidence that cannabis helps to prevent pain.

The second article lists the seven most common myths about medical cannabis.

According to the website WebMD an article written by claims “Three Puffs a Day Helped People With Nerve Pain, Study Finds”

Aug. 30, 2010 — Three puffs a day of cannabis, better known as marijuana, helps people with chronic nerve pain due to injury or surgery feel less pain and sleep better, a Canadian team has found.

”It’s been known anecdotally,” says researcher Mark Ware, MD, assistant professor of anesthesia and family medicine at McGill University in Montreal. “About 10% to 15% of patients attending a chronic pain clinic use cannabis as part of their pain [control] strategy,” he tells WebMD.

But Ware’s study is more scientific — a clinical trial in which his team compared placebo with three different doses of cannabis. The research is published in CMAJ, the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

The new study ”adds to the trickle of evidence that cannabis may help some of the patients who are struggling [with pain] at present,” Henry McQuay, , an emeritus fellow at Balliol College, Oxford University, England, writes in a commentary accompanying the study.

Marijuana for Pain Relief: Study Details

Ware evaluated 21 men and women, average age 45, who had chronic nerve pain (also called neuropathic pain). A typical example, Ware tells WebMD, is a patient who had knee surgery and during the course of the operation the surgeon may have had no choice but to cut a nerve, leading to chronic pain after the surgery.

Ware’s team tried three different potencies of marijuana, with the highest a concentration at 9.4% tetrahydrocannabinol () herbal cannabis. He also tested 2.5% and 6% THC.

”Each person was in the study for two months, and used all four strengths [including placebo],” Ware says. He rotated them through the four strengths in different orders, and they didn’t know which they were using.

The cannabis was put into gelatin capsules, then put into the bowl of a pipe. Each person was told to inhale for five seconds while the cannabis was lit, hold the smoke in their lungs for 10 seconds, and then exhale.

They did this single puff three times a day for five days for each of the doses and the placebo. The participants were allowed to continue on their routine pain medications.

For more: https://www.webmd.com/pain-management/news/20100830/marijuana-relieves-chronic-pain-research-show#1

So why are these studies so different?

Austin Schopper, on the website Quora gave five answers preceded by, “A big part of the problem is in how research is done. The body is very complex, and there are a lot of variables. That’s why drugs and vaccines have to go through so much testing.”

For more: https://www.quora.com/Why-are-there-so-many-conflicting-scientific-research-especially-in-fitness-nutrition-How-do-we-know-which-one-is-true

on the same website said it best:
“Such is the world we live in. No matter the subject, everything you thought you knew is wrong. So you embrace these new ideas, only to find out some time later that this is wrong as well.”

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