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Dr. Jason Busse, Research Director at the Chronic Pain Centre of Excellence (CPCoE), recently published a rapid recommendation on the use of cannabis for treatment of chronic pain in The British Medical Journal (The bmj).

Through the study Dr. Busse found that the benefits and harms of medical cannabis to treat and manage chronic pain are closely balanced. This finding supports clinicians sharing decision-making with patients to determine if treatment with medical cannabis aligns with the values of preferences of the patient seeking relief from chronic pain.

The study provides a weak recommendation to offer trial of non-inhaled medical cannabis or cannabinoids in addition to standard care. The close balance between the benefits and harms are the reason for the weak recommendation.

“Approximately 40% of Canadian Veterans report living with chronic pain, and increasing numbers are using medical cannabis for relief” said Dr. Busse. “Our clinical practice guideline, supported by four evidence syntheses, found that a minority of chronic pain patients will experience important pain relief, improvements in physical functioning and sleep quality with medical cannabis.”

To read the full recommendation, please click here.

In Fall of 2020, Dr. Busse presented his findings as part of our Veteran and Family Well-Being Series. To watch the presentation, please click here.

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