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Cannabis and Chronic Pain

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A new study released in January of this year is showing the power of cannabis in relieving chronic pain and inflammation via the endocannabinoid system. While cannabis has been used as a method of pain relief for decades, official research and testing has been scarce to naught. This study, published by the Department of Neurological Surgery at the Oregon Health and Science University, could be the first of many mainstream debuts of cannabis’s healing potential.

Targeting the rostral ventromedical medulla (a vital part of the endocannabinoid system’s modulation of pain), the study showed that chronic and inflammatory pain was able to block the CB1 and CB2 receptors and alter the effects of the RVM. The introduction of additional cannabinoids to the system, however, significantly counteracted the effects of this inflammation and positively activated the CB2 receptors as a useful point of relief and defense from chronic pain.

Though this study was only performed on rats, its results provide a clear thesis for the effectiveness of cannabis as a method of pain relief and hopefully will be proven further in the future with human trials and studies.