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Throughout the research, the group given orally administered cannabinoids did not differ significantly from the controls given a placebo, but the intramuscular patients saw significant improvement in acute pain.
The analysis further suggested that this may be the result of differences in the metabolism of cannabinoids that are administered in different ways. “In particular, oral absorption of cannabinoids is slow and variable, with peak plasma concentrations occurring 60 to 120 minutes after ingestion, but can be delayed by up to six hours,” the study said.
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“Cannabinoids are subject to a significant first-pass liver metabolism, which further reduces bioavailability. The use of transdermal, inhalative or oral transmucosal formulations enables direct plasma uptake and the avoidance of the first-pass effect. Inhaled cannabinoids reach their maximum effect in 10 minutes and the plasma levels are maintained for several hours, ”emphasized the authors of the study.
Here, the available data seem to suggest that alternative methods to traditional oral consumption methods may be more effective in treating pain. Water-soluble orally administered cannabis may also be an adequate alternative as it also has a faster activation time.
However, cannabinoid-based treatments increased the presence of certain side effects. However, it did not increase the presence of serious side effects, which could support its potential as a treatment for acute pain.
The study concludes by stating that all, if not exclusively, studies focused on THC. While THC has strong potential as a pain reliever, CBD is also a viable research candidate for novel treatments.
Competitive and diverse markets are fertile environments. Therefore, the expansion and research of cannabis as a medicine could help enrich science and empower the consumer.