Jonathan Vela, MD, Decides it's Time to Examine CBD Treatment for Chronic Pain

November 7, 2021
Giuliana Grossi

With the popularity of CBD growing in Denmark, Jonathan Vela, MD, examined the effectiveness of CBD treatment on hand osteoarthritis and psoriatic arthritis.

Jonathan Vela, MD, Department of Rheumatology Aalborg Denmark, spoke with HCPLive about a study he's presenting at the American College of Rheumatology 2021 Convergence.

The study, "Cannabidiol Treatment in Hand Osteoarthritis and Psoriatic Arthritis - A Randomized, Double-blind Placebo-controlled Trial" examined the effectiveness of cannabidiol (CBD) treatment for pain related to hand osteoarthritis (OA) and psoriatic arthritis (PsA).

There was no statistically significant effect of CBD for clinical pain intensity in patients with hand osteoarthritis or psoriatic arthritis compared with the control group. Investigators also looked at effects regarding sleep quality, scores of depression, anxiety and pain catastrophizing and still found no significant results.

In Denmark, CBD isn't as popular as it is in the US but it's beginning to gain attention. Vela shared that patients have asked him if CBD could help with their chronic pain.

"We tried to look at the literature," Vela said, "and saw that there was actually no proper randomized control trials done on CBD for pain and for chronic pain. So, we decided to do a study."

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or paracetamol are currently the main medical treatments for chronic pain in Denmark, according to Vela. They don't use opioids.

Mostly, Vela said, they use pain education and exercise or movement regimens to address chronic pain in patients.

The primary outcome was pain intensity during the last 24 hours (0-100mm). When explaining the study, Vela pointed out that the patients with psoriatic arthritis did not have active arthritis at the time of the study. Patients received 20-30mg of CBD or a placebo daily for 12 weeks.


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