A study on the potential role of hemp-derived cannabidiol as an alternative to opioids for pain patients has indicated positive results.
Dr Alex Capano, Chief Science Officer of Ecofibre’s Ananda Health business in the United States, led a study involving the use of cannabidiol (CBD) to reduce the use of opioids in the treatment of chronic pain.
97 patients who had been using opioids for managing chronic pain (some for decades) completed the 8-week study. Of the 94 patients who added Ananda full spectrum hemp extract to their treatment, 53% reduced or eliminated their use of opioids and 94% reported improvements in quality of life (improvements in sleep, pain and/or mood).
Of the three that didn’t use the CBD hemp extract, none reduced their opioid medication at any interval during the study.
Less Is More With CBD?
Participants were provided bottles containing 60 hemp-derived CBD soft gels (15 mg) at baseline, week 4 and week 8. While a small number of participants experienced side-effects, no significant adverse events were reported
According to Dr. Capano:
“Most participants used a relatively low dose of 30mg of CBD per day, whereas other studies on CBD have tested very large doses, 10x or 20x that amount,” he said. “Lower doses of CBD mean reduced risk of side effects and improved outcomes.”
The study states its findings were “consistent with emerging literature on the topic, which has concluded that CBD is an effective analgesic, and one that helps reduce barriers to opioid reduction, such as physiological withdrawal symptoms.”
It does note various limitations in the structure of its investigation including lack of a randomised, placebo-controlled design, short duration, lack of a control group, and relatively small sample size.
The results of the study have been published in the Journal Postgraduate Medical and Hospital Practice and can be viewed here.
Ecofibre (ASX: EOF), chaired by Barry Lambert, operates in the United States and Australia. In the USA, it manufactures nutraceutical products, topical creams and salves under the Ananda banner. In Australia, it produces hemp food products including protein powders, de-hulled hemp seed and hempseed oil through Ananda Food.