UC San Diego Study Investigates Cannabis Treatment for Migraines

Researchers at UC San Diego have launched a first-of-its-kind study into the effectiveness of cannabis as a treatment for acute migraines.

Full story after the jump.

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego have launched the first known randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, clinical trial to study whether cannabis is effective at treating acute migraines, La Jolla Light reports. There are about 20 participants currently enrolled in the study.

Dr. Nathaniel Schuster, a pain management specialist and headache neurologist at UC San Diego Health and a researcher at the university’s Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research, acknowledged that many people already self-treat their migraines – some with cannabis.

“Many patients who suffer from migraines have experienced them for many years but have never discussed them with their physicians. …  Right now, when patients ask us if cannabis works for migraines, we do not have evidence-based data to answer that question.” – Schuster to the Light

The team hopes to enroll 90 participants to treat four types of migraines with four different treatments: THC, CBD, a combination, and a placebo. The study participants will use a vaporizer, which Schuster said, “may be more effective for those patients who have nausea or gastrointestinal issues with their migraines.”

To qualify for the study, patients must be 21-65-years-old, experience migraines every month, and must not be a regular cannabis or opioid user.

A 2017 study presented at the 3rd Congress of the European Academy of Neurology found a medical cannabis compound reduced migraine frequency by 40.4% and pain intensity by 43.5%.

A Washington State University study in 2019 found patients self-reported a reduction of migraine severity by 47.3% after using inhaled cannabis.

A study published last year by Migraine Buddy and Healint found 82% of migraine patients said cannabis provided them relief.

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