Comparing the effects of medical cannabis for chronic pain patients with and without co-morbid anxiety: A cohort study

Lara Bapir, Simon Erridge, Martha Nicholas, Manaswini Pillai, Nishaanth Dalavaye, Carl Holvey, Ross Coomber, Jonathan Hoare, Shaheen Khan, Mark W. Weatherall, James J. Rucker, Michael Platt, Mikael H. Sodergren*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Introduction: There is growing evidence on the efficacy of cannabis-based medicinal products (CBMPs) for chronic pain (CP). Due to the interaction between CP and anxiety, and the potential impact of CBMPs on both anxiety and CP, this article aimed to compare the outcomes of CP patients with and without co-morbid anxiety following CBMP treatment. Methods: Participants were prospectively enrolled and categorized by baseline General Anxiety Disorder-7(GAD-7) scores, into ‘no anxiety’(GAD-7 < 5) and ‘anxiety’(GAD-7 ≥ 5) cohorts. Primary outcomes were changes in Brief Pain Inventory Short-Form, Short-form McGill Pain Questionnaire-2, Pain Visual Analogue Scale, Sleep Quality Scale (SQS), GAD-7 and EQ-5D-5L index values at 1, 3 and 6 months. Results: 1254 patients (anxiety = 711; no anxiety = 543) met inclusion criteria. Significant improvements in all primary outcomes were observed at all timepoints (p < 0.050), except GAD-7 in the no anxiety group(p > 0.050). The anxiety cohort reported greater improvements in EQ-5D-5L index values, SQS and GAD-7(p < 0.050), but there were no consistent differences in pain outcomes. Conclusion: A potential association between CBMPs and improvements in pain and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in CP patients was identified. Those with co-morbid anxiety reported greater improvements in HRQoL.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-295
Number of pages15
JournalExpert Review of Neurotherapeutics
Volume23
Issue number3
Early online date20 Feb 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 26 Feb 2023

Keywords

  • anxiety
  • cannabidiol
  • Cannabis
  • chronic pain
  • pain
  • tetrahydrocannabinol

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