HomeNewsStudy Suggests THC + CBD For Medical Cannabis Migraine Relief

Study Suggests THC + CBD For Medical Cannabis Migraine Relief

A recent study has found acute migraine treatment with THC + CBD together may be superior to either cannabinoid alone.

Migraine goes beyond a “normal” headache and the pain can last for days. It can be accompanied by symptoms such as light and/or sound sensitivity, visual disturbances, nausea, and vomiting. Migraines can be debilitating and seriously impact the overall quality of life of the sufferer; particularly those with a chronic condition.

Globally, migraine affects an estimated more than 10% of people. Treatments include acetaminophen, NSAIDs and triptans; but overuse of these medications can progress migraine from episodic (<15 events per month) to a chronic condition.

Cannabis has been tapped as as a tool that can be used to treat/manage migraines, and this application is among the common medicinal uses of cannabinoids. Previous research has indicated positive findings on the therapeutic effects, coupled with fewer side effects and a good safety profile . However, it should be noted overuse of cannabis for migraine relief may also be associated with “rebound” headaches.

Cannabis contains over a hundred cannabinoids, with the most commonly used and best studied being delta 9 tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9 THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Researchers from the University of California conducted a study to assess the efficacy of vaporized versus placebo cannabis using different formulations, being:

  • 6% Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC-dominant)
  • 11% cannabidiol (CBD-dominant)
  • 6% THC + 11% CBD
  • Placebo cannabis flower

Participants consumed one of each in a vaporized form in a randomized order.

The results indicate THC + CBD was superior to placebo at achieving pain relief, pain freedom, and most bothersome symptom (MBS) freedom at 2 hours. Additionally, THC + CBD provided sustained pain freedom at 24 hours and sustained MBS freedom at 24 and 48 hours.

While THC-dominant was superior to placebo for pain relief, it wasn’t in relation to pain freedom or MBS freedom at 2 hours. As for CBD-dominant, there was no superiority to placebo for pain relief, pain freedom or MBS freedom at 2 hours.

The researchers report there were no serious adverse events associated with any of the formulations, and in their conclusion stated:

“Future research should include multicenter studies and long-term studies of benefits and risks with repeated use.”

It’s important to note the study report at the time of writing was still at pre-print status – it has not yet been peer reviewed by a journal.

Gillian Jalimnson
Gillian Jalimnson is one of Hemp Gazette's staff writers and has been with us since we kicked off in 2015. Gillian sees massive potential for cannabis in areas of health, energy, building and personal care products and is intrigued by the potential for cannabidiol (CBD) as an alternative to conventional treatments. You can contact Gillian here.

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