The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog ran from 2006 to 2016 and was intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

    Cannabinoids to treat chronic non-cancer pain

    Effective options to treat patients with chronic pain are limited.

    Researchers at the University of Toronto reviewed lots of different forms of cannabis.

    First, the details.

    • 18 studies were included.
    • Cannabinoids studied included smoked cannabis, oromucosal extracts of cannabis-based medicine, nabilone (Cesamet), dronabinol (Marinol), and a novel THC analog.
    • Chronic non-cancer pain conditions included neuropathic pain, fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, and mixed chronic pain.
    • Overall, the quality of studies was excellent.

    And, the results.

    • 15 of the 18 studies demonstrated a significant pain relieving effect of cannabinoid compared to placebo.
    • Several reported significant improvements in sleep.
    • There were no serious adverse effects.
    • Adverse effects most commonly reported were generally well tolerated, mild to moderate in severity and led to withdrawal from the studies in only a few cases.

    The bottom line?

    The authors concluded, ÔÇťOverall, there is evidence that cannabinoids are safe and modestly effective in neuropathic pain with preliminary evidence of efficacy in fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis.

    “Modestly effective,” but aside from placebo, better than what other therapy?

    3/24/11 19:41 JR

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