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Cannabinoids 2010;5(1):1-3 (January 23, 2010)

Article of the Month

Cannabinoids in cancer pain

Franjo Grotenhermen

nova-Institut, Chemiepark Knapsack, Industriestraße, D-50354 Hürth, Germany, franjo.grotenhermen@nova-institut.de

This article of the month presents results of a clinical study conducted in the UK and Romania, which evaluated the efficacy of a THC:CBD cannabis extract (Sativex®) and a THC cannabis ex-tract in the treatment of 177 patients with cancer pain, who experienced inadequate pain reduction despite intake of opioids [Johnson et al. J Pain Symptom Manage, 2010, in press]. Sativex resulted in a significant improvement of mean pain scores on a primary outcome measure, a Numerical Rating Scale (NRS) from 0 to 10 compared to placebo (improvement of -1.37 versus -0.69), while the THC extract caused a non-significant improvement (-1.01). Conversely, there was a significant improvement in total pain according to the Brief Pain Inventory-Short Form in the THC-group compared to placebo but a non-significant improvement following Sativex.

cannabis, THC, cannabidiol, chronic pain, cancer, clinical trial.

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