IASP Position Statement on the Use of Cannabinoids to Treat Pain
The International Association for the Study of Pain conducted a two-and-a-half-year process of rigorous evidence appraisal on the use of cannabinoids to treat pain. IASP Presidential Task Force on Cannabis and Cannabinoid Analgesia has completed its work and has found that:
“Reviews of preclinical research and clinical safety and efficacy of cannabis and cannabinoids for pain relief have identified important research gaps. Due to the lack of high-quality clinical evidence, IASP does not currently endorse general use of cannabis and cannabinoids for pain relief. IASP recognises the pressing need for preclinical and clinical studies to fill the research gap, and for education on this topic.”
More information and IASP’s position can be found here.
In addition, A/Professor Michael Vagg, Dean of the Faculty of Pain Medicine, wrote in The Conversation about some of the commonly held misconceptions about medicinal cannabis and chronic pain in light of the IASP recommendations.
Painaustralia’s position is set out in our recent statement here.
A recent survey of 454 members revealed 85 per cent support the use of medicinal cannabis for pain management. This number may increase as recent changes to limit access to prescribed opioids will inevitably lead to Australians living with chronic pain searching for effective alternatives.
Community expectations regarding the use of medicinal cannabis to treat pain is growing and while we acknowledge the importance of evidenced-based, best practice approaches to pain management, a consumer’s lived, personal experience and benefits of a new therapy should also be considered.