Nabilone for Chronic Pain Including Nerve Pain (eg CRPS)

Pain Matters

Dear Pain Matters blog readers,

Dr Mark Ware, McGill University in Montreal, reported that Nabilone (‘Cesamet’), an oral synthetic cannabinoid, may offer some pain relief in both cancer and non cancer pain.  

Specifically, Nabilone may help alleviate painful symptoms in patients with:

– Nerve pain (e.g. complex regional pain syndrome, CRPS);

– Multiple sclerosis;

– Fibromyalgia; 

– Other chronic non cancer pain (eg postoperative or traumatic pain, arthritis, Crohn’s disease, interstitial cystitis, HIV-associated myopathy, post-polio syndrome, idiopathic inguinal pain, and chronic headaches); and

– Cancer pain.

Dr May Ong-Lam reported that in 10 patients with refractory CRPS, Nabilone treatment resulted in up to 60% pain reduction.  Opioids and other pain medication were no longer required by 7 patients following Nabilone therapy.  Improved quality of life and better sleep resulted.  Nabilone treatment resulted in improved physical ability including the ability to bear weight, resume work, and perform housework.  There were few side effects, and patients did…

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