Pain is by far the most common condition for which medicinal cannabis is used. About 50% of all medical cannabis patients use cannabis to alleviate pain.
The medical conditions responsible for pain are quite varied but there is a remarkable consistency in patient’s response to cannabis use.
The majority of patients are able to reduce or eliminate entirely their use of prescription opiates such as vicodin or oxycontin.
Patients who do well on cannabis often cannot tolerate the side effects of opiates including constipation and daytime sedation.
When cannabis is used for pain, most patients report that they do not experience significant side effects typical of those experienced by recreational users such as giddiness, short-term memory loss or sedation. Recent research on brain physiology suggests that when one is in pain the pain receptors are more receptive to stimuli while the pleasure and addiction centers are relatively resistant to stimulation. This is why the vast majority of patients using opiates for pain do not become addicted to it.
Cannabis can provide effective pain relief for many different illnesses, injuries and medical conditions.