Cannabis vs Pain Killers
In practical application, cannabis therapy can be used in conjunction with other chronic pain therapies.
It seems that long gone are the times when the news of athletes using cannabis for health reasons would shock a person. Today, more and more athletes suffering from traumatic injuries or chronic pain are using cannabis infused creams instead of traditional opioid painkillers. At the same time, athletes are turning the stereotype of the “lazy pothead” upside down.
“Medical cannabis is a very effective therapy for chronic pain patients because it affects people’s perception of pain, has the ability to mitigate the inflammatory process, and has been shown to affect voltage-gated sodium channels in nerves in a way similar to lidocaine,” - Dr. Mark Rabe
In his clinical practice, Dr. Rabe reports, “We have many patients who come in on higher doses of opioid medications. Through using cannabis, in conjunction with other therapies, they are able to lower their daily opioid requirement.”
Safety of Use
As the DEA again looks at rescheduling cannabis, it’s worth repeating there is copious cell, animal, and patient-reported data on cannabis’ safety and efficacy for sports injury-related ailments, as well as substantial evidence from human trials.
Compared to opiates, cannabis is considered a more “natural” pain reliever, but this does not mean that it is necessarily less effective. We often tend to think that natural medicine is by default less effective and takes more time to work. But, Cannabis seems to deliver fast relief.
Pain & Inflammation Modulation
The use of cannabis to treat chronic pain has had a long history, with written references of its use dating back to around 2700 B.C.E. The first records in the nineteenth century were recorded by the Irish doctor William B. O’Shaughnessy, who described the use of cannabis in the treatment of cholera, rabies, tetanus, menstrual cramps and delirium tremens.
In modern times, significant research has been done around cannabis therapy in the treatment of chronic pain with very promising results. And today many athletes actually use topical creams that contain cannabis for the simple reason that it actually helps them manage pain and heal more quickly.
Cannabis contains powerful anti-inflammatory compounds as well as natural analgesics, providing a one-two punch that makes medicinal marijuana an excellent part of a Sports Medicine Regimen.
Because cannabis has been used to treat a wide range of different kinds of pain, it appears to be a promising source of analgesic medication. And many scientists believe that cannabis can help break the chronic pain cycle.
Using topical cannabis on dermatomes I was able to manage extremely severe pain both before and after surgery without the use of any opiate medications and without any sedation. Cannabis has been shown to enhance the effectiveness of opiate pain medication - Dr. Jake Felice