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Doctors propose medical cannabis to manage pain at APS meeting in Anaheim
Pain is one of the major reasons why increasing numbers of Americans are hooked to the prescription opioid addiction. According to the American Pain Society (APS), surgery is the cause for persistent ache in almost 25 percent individuals grappling with severe pain. At the annual scientific meeting of the APS held recently in Anaheim, specialists suggested that proper use of medical cannabis could show “remarkable” improvements in pain. The APS meeting focused on effective pain management options that could tackle the rising opioid addiction.
“Our approach in recommending medical cannabis for pain is that patients have failed to respond to conservative therapies first. However, this should be considered before chronic opioids,” said Dr. Mark Wallace, professor of clinical anesthesiology at the University of California, San Diego with four to five years of experience in helping people manage pain with medical cannabis treatment.
In the case of patients who are already on opioids, Wallace has advised them to be weaned away from painkiller before commencing medical marijuana treatment. In fact, he emphasizes that they have an option to use either medical cannabis or the opioids, but not both. Similarly, Elliot Krane, chief of pediatric pain management at Stanford Children’s Health, California, said he used cannabidiol (CBD) “cautiously” in the case of children with painful conditions. He said he was tired of prescribing ketamine or opioids to kids, so he moved to CBD, which has led to significant improvements in many of his young patients.
However, one of the key challenges to this practice is of proper dosing. For example, even low doses of 2 to 3 milligrams of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is the chief psychoactive component in cannabis, can have both analgesic as well as anxiolytic effects. Whereas, higher doses of 10 to 25 milligrams may even cause paranoia or psychosis. Moreover, the stimulatory effects of THC is the main reason for the high rates of addiction across the U.S., making marijuana the second most popular recreational drugs in the country. Research shows THC stimulates the brain cells to trigger a dopamine surge to produce euphoric sensations, which push users toward full-blown marijuana use disorder.
Battling menace of addiction
In recent years, American society has been witnessing a loud clamor for complete legalization of marijuana across the country. With more and more teens and young adults falling prey to the use of marijuana, opponents cite the paucity of sufficient evidence to support the drug’s therapeutic claims. As the medicinal properties of marijuana remains a highly disputable and largely contentious topic, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) continues to retain its Schedule I classification tag for the substance due to its high potential for abuse.
If you or your loved one is battling addiction to marijuana or any other substance, seek treatment immediately. The Anaheim Drug Treatment and Rehab Center can help you get one of the best addiction treatment programs and embrace sobriety. You may call at our 24/7 helpline number 714-589-2811 for more information on different treatment options in your vicinity.