Role of Cannabinoids in Pain Management
Abstract: Cannabis has been used in medicine for centuries. Modern understanding of the clinical effects of cannabis and cannabinoids in the treatment of pain is evolving. Cannabinoid compounds include phytocannabinoids, endocannabinoids, and synthetics. The two main phytocannabinoids are delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). The endocannabinoid system is comprised of endogenous cannabinoids and cannabinoid receptors including CB1 receptors located primarily in the brain and peripheral tissue and CB2 receptors in the immune and hematopoetic systems. Cannabis bioavailability and metabolism varies significantly for inhaled versus oral/sublingual routes of delivery. Large, well-designed clinical trials are limited; however the studies available provide evidence to support the use of cannabinoids for some cancer, neuropathic, and chronic pain conditions.
Keywords: cannabinoids / cannabis / dispensaries / endocannabinoid system / medical marijuana
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