Research about the benefits of cannabis use among migraine patients is slowly emerging, but more must be done to properly inform individuals about the use and dosage of medical marijuana.
Nearly 1 in 4 U.S. households and about a billion people worldwide suffer from migraines, according to the Migraine Research Foundation. But new data shows 30% of U.S. migraine patients have turned to cannabis for pain relief with 83% of them reporting improved symptoms.
Researchers used data collected through Healint’s Migraine Buddy, a global migraine tracking app that records the frequency and intensity of attacks, as well as sleep and dietary triggers. Patients used a variety of cannabis delivery methods, including smoking, vaping, edibles, and tinctures. None were shown to be more effective than others.
“Cannabis is becoming a prominent treatment option for chronic pain patients, especially for migraineurs,” said Healint CEO and co-founder Francois Cadiou.
“Research about the benefits of cannabis use among migraine patients is slowly emerging, but more must be done to properly inform individuals about the use and dosage of medical marijuana to treat migraines.”
Several past studies back up these newest claims. Researchers behind a recent study published in the journal Brain Sciences found that sustained cannabis consumption led to decreased migraine frequency over time. “These findings indicate that medical cannabis results in long-term reduction of migraine frequency in >60% of treated patients and is associated with less disability and lower antimigraine medication intake.”
Similar research published last year in the Journal of Pain found inhaled cannabis reduced headache and migraine severity by half. And a study published earlier this year concluded that using cannabis with THC levels greater than 10% benefited patients the most, with 94% experiencing lowered pain levels within two hours of consumption.
“Migraines have a debilitating impact on tens of millions of Americans and, in many cases, are poorly addressed by conventional therapies,” said NORML Deputy Director Paul Armentano. “Therefore, it is not surprising to see a significant percentage of migraine sufferers turning to cannabis as a therapeutic option.
“Those that do so are consistently reporting it to be safe and effective at reducing both migraine symptoms and migraine frequency.”