Living with spine pain for more than a few days or weeks can take a serious toll on your daily life. It’s not always easy to find a pain management solution that’s effective. There’s also concern about the long-term use of traditional painkillers, especially opioids. Even NSAIDs that manage pain by reducing inflammation can have serious side effects if used for a long time. One solution more people with chronic spine pain are considering is CBD (cannabidiol) oil, but does it relieve spine pain?
Before going any further, let’s answer this question, since it’s what often comes to mind when anything cannabis related is discussed. While CBD oil does come from marijuana plant compounds, it’s not psychoactive. In other words, you don’t get the psychological effects people often associate with marijuana. There are even strains of the plant being cultivated with very little THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the active ingredient in marijuana.
CBD stimulates the cannabinoid system, a part of the brain linked to the central nervous system. The result is a reduction in the sensation of pain coupled with a decrease in inflammation. There’s evidence suggesting such benefits extend to many types of pain, including spine-related discomfort.
Evidence also suggests a cannabinoid system stimulated by CBD oil may experience relief from both chronic and acute pain. Additionally, there are therapeutic approaches that could minimize or prevent potential undesirable nervous system effects. Researchers have also noted anti-inflammatory benefits.
In one recent study, a team of researchers assessed the potential benefits of CBD and cannabis. While they admit more research is necessary, researchers did note there were clear pain management benefits associated with CBD oil and its related compounds. The main benefit for patients with spine pain is the possibility of becoming less dependent on opioids. Although some patients have a legitimate need for strong pain medication such as opioids, especially following a procedure such as ACDF surgery, Los Angeles patients should be aware that the long-term use of opioids is associated with:
• Addiction and/or opioid abuse
• Possible organ damage
• Certain sleep disorders
• Constipation and indigestion (dyspepsia)
A study was done with mice with degenerative disc disease (DDD), the general term for age-related spinal disc wear. The mice were given high doses of CBD oil, which resulted in less damage from disc-related wear, yet researchers were unable to identify exactly how CBD oil helped the lab animals tested. It’s also not known how patients with other sources of spine pain might respond to a pain management plan that includes CBD oil. Even so, there’s mounting evidence suggesting this product has pain management properties.
Be aware there are restrictions on CBD oil, since it’s not yet FDA approved. It’s also difficult to obtain in states where medical marijuana isn’t legal. Plus, a doctor or spine specialist isn’t likely to consider this substance as an option unless a patient specifically mentions it as something he or she would like to try, and even then, there may be some hesitation to officially recommend CBD oil for spine pain until there’s more research available.
Back pain can often be effectively managed or eliminated when you seek the help of an experienced Los Angeles spine surgeon. The pioneering spine specialists at The Spine Institute have years of experience successfully diagnosing and treating back pain. If you’re experiencing sudden, severe, or lingering pain in your back or neck, call one of our friendly representatives today at 310-828-7757 to schedule a consultation.