Study: Cannabis Products Effective in Self-Management of Chronic Pelvic Pain

Jacksonville, FL: A significant percentage of women with chronic pelvic pain (CPP) acknowledge using cannabis and/or cannabis-products as a way to effectively mitigate their symptoms, according to data published in the Journal of Women’s Health. Chronic pelvic pain affects up to 15 percent of women in the United States.

A team of researchers affiliated with the Mayo Clinic surveyed 113 women with pelvic and perineal pain residing in a state where medical cannabis access is legal (Florida).

More than 20 percent of the subjects in the study reported using either cannabis or CBD, and 96 percent of them reported that cannabis products provided improvement for one or more symptoms, including pain, cramping, and sleep disturbances.

Authors concluded: “To our knowledge, this is the first study in the United States, which evaluated the prevalence of cannabis use among women with CPP. Our findings show that a clinically significant percentage of women use cannabis in addition to or as an alternative to traditional therapy for chronic pain.”

They added: “[U]sers indicated that cannabis improved CPP-related symptoms, decreased reliance on the health care system, and helped reduce use of opioid medications. Our findings provide important incremental evidence, and we hope to pave the way toward acceptance and consideration of cannabis as a therapeutic option for patients with debilitating pain to improve their quality of life.”

Separate data from Canada reports that the frequency with which women acknowledge using cannabis for pelvic pain has increased following the enactment of adult-use legalization. Authors of the study further reported, “post-legalization, cannabis users were less likely to require daily opioids” – a finding that is consistent with dozens of prior studies.

Full text of the first study, “Use of cannabis for self-management of chronic pelvic pain,” appears in the Journal of Women’s Health. Full text of the second study, “Recreational cannabis use before and after legalization in women with pelvic pain,” appears in Obstetrics and Gynecology. Additional information is available in the NORML fact sheet, “Relationship Between Marijuana and Opioids.”