Journal Article Annotations
2023, 1st Quarter
Annotations by R. Garrett Key, MD
The authors review the lack of high quality data supporting use of cannabis for analgesia and opioid use reduction; they also review known risks related to fungal infection, cannabis use disorder, carcinogenesis and teratogenesis. Suggestions for future research and regulatory structure are proposed to move towards a scientifically informed framework for the safe and beneficial use of cannabis as a medical therapy.
Strength and weaknesses:
The article reviews a significant amount of relevant evidence on the use of cannabis for pain and also a variety of well-established risks of cannabis use. They make a well-supported case for the need to improve the scientific basis on which policy and public opinion around cannabis use are based. Limited data around cannabis use disorder, non-analgesic uses of cannabis,
C-L psychiatrists are often involved in the management of analgesia in the context of substance use disorders and are also often asked to opine on potential risks and benefits of cannabis use for medical purposes, particularly in oncology settings. This concise review of cannabis analgesia data and also known and possible risks of cannabis will be helpful to C-L providers in educating patients, families, and colleagues.