A team of researchers from the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Rambam Medical Center, Tel Aviv University, and the Sheba Medical Center have found that small, metered cannabis doses delivered via inhaler can have a positive impact on chronic pain.
Cannabis is an effective means of treating chronic pain, but determining an optimal dosage is a difficult task. This has prevented the standardization of these treatments and discouraged many doctors from issuing cannabis prescriptions. One way to ensure accurate dosing is to use a small, portable vaporizer, commonly known as an inhaler.
The researchers studied individuals who received 0.5 mg or 1 mg of cannabis against those who received a placebo. Both doses of cannabis, but not the placebo, alleviated chronic pain for a prolonged period of about two and a half hours. Side effects were mostly mild and resolved themselves. There was no evidence of impairments in cognitive performance or significant health risks. This is the first time that researchers have been able to achieve pain relief through such a small dose. The study paves the way for accurate, customized pain management using cannabis.
The researchers’ findings were published in the European Journal of Pain. The study was led by Professor Elon Eisenberg, dean of the Rappaport Faculty of Medicine at the Technion, and Dr. Shlomo Almog of Sheba Medical Center and Tel Aviv University.