According to numerous clinical studies, medical cannabis has been found as an effective alternative for the treatment of the following diseases

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Chronic Pain

Based on a meta-analysis of numerous studies, there is substiantial evidence that currently available cannabinoids are safe, modestly effective analgesics and that they provide a reasonable therapeutic option in the management of chronic non-cancer pain.1 In this context, many people with chronic pain are turning to other therapies including cannabinoids. According to Committee on the Health Effects of Marijuana: An Evidence Review and Research Agenda, published by the United States National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, 2017, there is conclusive or substantial evidence that cannabis or cannabinoids are effective for the treatment of chronic pain in adults.2

Sleep disorders

According to various studies, there is moderate evidence that cannabinoids, primarily nabiximols, are an effective treatment to improve short-term outcomes in individuals with sleep disturbance associated with obstructive sleep apnea syndrome, fibromyalgia, chronic pain, and multiple sclerosis.3 Nabiximols refer to Sativex, an extract of certain cannabis plants. Additional research is required to provide specificity. One of the most common reasons that patients report the use of cannabis for medical purposes is to reduce pain and improve sleep. Despite this repeated association, it is not clear whether the effects of cannabis use on pain are mediated by the effect of improved sleep, or vice versa.4


Cannabinoids may be an effective treatment for certain patients with refractory epilepsy. In a review by the British Epilepsy Association the experience of five Israeli pediatric epilepsy clinics treating children and adolescents diagnosed as having intractable epilepsy with a regimen of medical cannabis oil was studied. The results on effects of Cannabidiol treatment were highly promising.5 Further studies are continuing.6


There is conclusive evidence that oral cannabinoids are effective anti- emetics in the treatment of chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting.3 Cannabis can work similarly to opioids when treating individuals living with cancer related pain. Additionally, it may have anti-inflammatory effects that can help with pain. Some treatment plans may include both opioids and marijuana.7 In the United States Commercially available cannabinoids, such as dronabinol and nabilone are approved drugs for the treatment of cancer-related side effects.8

1. J Neuroimmune Pharmacol DOI 10.1007/s11481-015-9600-6, Cannabinoids for the Treatment of Chronic Non-Cancer Pain: An updated Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials M. E. Lynch & Mark A. Ware.
2. Committee on the Health Effects of Marijuana: An Evidence Review and Research Agenda, National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, 2017, page 27.
3. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. The health effects of cannabis and cannabinoids: The current state of evidence and recommendations for research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24625.
4. Ferguson G and Ware MA (2015), Review Article: Sleep, Pain, and Cannabis, Journal of Sleep Disorders and Therapy, 4:191, doi:10.4172/2167-0277.1000191
5. CBD-enriched medical cannabis for intractable pediatric epilepsy - The current Israeli experience, Michal Tzadok et. al., 1059-1311/� 2016 British Epilepsy Association. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
6. Trial of Cannabidiol for Drug-Resistant Seizures in the Dravet Syndrome, Orrin Devinsky, M.D., J. Helen Cross, Ph.D., F.R.C.P.C.H., Linda Laux, M.D., Eric Marsh, M.D., Ian Miller, M.D., Rima Nabbout, M.D., Ingrid E. Scheffer, M.B., B.S., Ph.D., Elizabeth A. Thiele, M.D., Ph.D., and Stephen Wright, M.D., for the Cannabidiol in Dravet Syndrome Study Group, N Engl J Med 2017; 376:2011-2020May 25, 2017DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1611618