Medical Marijuana for Chronic Back Pain - Marijuana Doctors (2023)

Back pain can affect anyone, and when seeking treatment to alleviate the pain, many people now turn to medical cannabis. Estimates show that common (non-specific) back pain is widespread60 to 70 percent in industrialized countries per year. Back pain can produce symptoms such as severe pain and muscle spasms – even nausea from the medications that help relieve it. Fortunately, medical marijuana can help with back pain.

How is medical marijuana an effective treatment for back pain?

An alternative treatment for back pain is medical cannabis. The medicinal herb is increasingly becoming a treatment of choice for sufferers of chronic back pain. While conventional treatments can be effective in controlling back pain symptoms, they can also have side effects such as nausea, stomach pain, ulcers and stomach bleeding.

Medical marijuana can be an alternative remedy for back pain and does not have the same side effects as traditional medications for chronic pain. Marijuana for back pain can help your back pain in the following ways:

  • Reduce or eliminate your pain so you can lead an active life
  • Reduce or eliminate your need to take potentially dangerous or addictive medications
  • Reduce or eliminate your depression, insomnia and anxiety that can accompany chronic pain
  • Give yourself the peace of mind that you are using a natural treatment for your back pain
  • Enables a better quality of life

A research project at the University of Colorado Spine Center looked into thisin 200 patients who had back painor degenerative disc problems. Of all participants who used cannabis for back pain, 89% said it moderately or greatly reduced their pain. Eighty-one percent said it worked as well or even better than narcotic pain relievers. They also indicated that they needed to consume marijuana no more than once or twice a day.

Back pain symptoms treated with medical marijuana

As you know, back pain can present itself with a variety of symptoms. The medicine pot has many medicinal properties that help alleviate a variety of different symptoms. For patients with back pain, marijuana can help:

1. Pain and muscle spasms

Now that more states are legalizing medical marijuana, researchers can see more data about cannabis and its ability to treat pain. In one study, participants reported a 45% reduction in pain intensity 20 minutes after inhaling the treatment. Cannabis is particularly useful for back muscle spasms.

Medical Marijuana for Chronic Back Pain - Marijuana Doctors (1)

In many states, muscle spasms are a legal condition for medical marijuana use. North Dakota has recognized chronic back pain as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana use.

2. Nausea and vomiting

The antiemetic properties of marijuana are of great value. Doctors often prescribe opioids or other narcotics for patients with pain. The main side effects of this type of medicine are nausea and vomiting.

As cannabis treats both nausea and pain, many people attest to its extensive healing powers. And that's not counting its powerful mood-elevating properties, which help with depression and suicidal thoughts. Because of these effects, many states have included nausea as a qualifying condition for marijuana use.

3. Inflammation

Most cases of back pain are caused by inflammation that causes degenerative disc disease. As you may already know, medicinal herb is an excellent natural remedy to treat inflammation and chronic pain. Therefore, it is not surprising that patients suffering from back pain due to disc disease also experience relief from this treatment.

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How to get medical marijuana for back pain

To obtain medical cannabis for back pain, you must first consult a licensed cannabis physician. They will examine your symptoms, make a diagnosis and recommend the medicinal herb. You need to get a medical cannabis card and then shop at your local pharmacies to find the cannabis products and strains you want.

Ways to use medical marijuana for back pain

Use cannabis for back pain topically or internally to find relief. some of the bestMethods of using medicinal herbsto contain:

  • Inhalation (vaping or smoking):When inhaling the medicinal herb, you will feel immediate relief, usually after just a minute or two.
  • Rohsaft:The juice from its medicinal pot works as a dietary supplement where you drink it a few times a day. It relieves your pain without the psychoactive effects as it is not heated.
  • Tinctures:Tinctures are swallowed or placed under the tongue. Placing them under the tongue will give you quick results, although not as quick as smoking.
  • Edible:The effects are slower for edibles, as they are essentially food that needs to pass through the digestive tract in order for the liver to metabolize the herb. However, you get longer-lasting relief and generally better psychotropic effects.
  • oils:Marijuana oils offer a completely different experience. They use oils in small doses and then increase them. Oils provide the body with highly concentrated amounts of cannabinoids.

Best marijuana strains for back pain

Each strain of marijuana affects each person differently. However, potent THC strains seem to work better at relieving pain, while CBD strains are better at reducing inflammation. When you reduce inflammation, you reduce back pain.

It is also important to understand that strains with a higher percentage of THC also have stronger psychoactive effects. So during the day you might want to use a lower THC strain and save it for the night before bed.

Below are some good medical cannabis strains if you are struggling with back pain:

  • Bubba Kush (Indica):Bubba Kush contains up to 22% THC and up to 0.1% CBD. It is good for relieving stress and relieving muscle tension.
  • Candyland (Sativa):Containing around 24 percent THC and 1 percent CBD and CBN, Candyland is a great strain for relieving pain and relieving muscle tension. It also has a stimulating effect, so it's good for fatigue.
  • Headband (hybrid):Contains up to 27 percent THC but less than one percent CBD content. The bandana relieves pain and relaxes muscle tension. It also lasts longer than other varieties.
  • OG Kush (Indica):Contains up to 23% THC and about 1% CBD. It works well for muscle spasms and relieves pain.
  • ACDC (Sativa):ACDC is high in CBD but low in THC. It contains up to 24% CBD and around 1.2% THC, making it great for relieving pain without the psychoactive effects.

Marijuana side effects for back pain

Although medical marijuana is very effective in treating back pain, there is a chance of side effects. They are usually mild and go away once the treatment wears off. Either way, it's good to know what they are so you can talk to your doctor and discuss them. Here are some common side effects that you may experience:

  • Red eyes:Most, if not all, people who use cannabis experience eye redness. This is not harmful, and you can relieve red eyes with eye drops.
  • Short term memory loss:Some people experience short-term memory loss after using cannabis. Again, this is a temporary side effect that will go away once the treatment is over.
  • Enhanced sensory perception:This is a side effect that improves your eyesight, hearing, taste and smell.
  • Fatigue:Fatigue is common with high THC strains. To avoid this side effect, you can use a sativa strain that will lift you up and give you energy.

Learn more about marijuana and back pain

The University of Colorado Spine Center published a study that found that marijuana relieved back pain in a safer way than opioids. In fact,90 percent of privateThose who used the herb reported a significant reduction in their back pain, and 80% found medical marijuana an equal, if not better, treatment than opioids.

back pain

So now we have seen how medical marijuana and back pain treatment can significantly help with your pain and other symptoms. Now let's discuss what back pain is, its symptoms, causes and other information.

What is back pain?

Back pain is a problem that many people are very familiar with. It can range from constant, dull pain to sharp, sudden pain that leaves you unable to function. A fall, accident, or improper lifting of heavy objects can cause back pain suddenly, or you can develop it gradually as your spine changes with age.

Structural problems can cause back pain, including:

  • Sciatica
  • ruptured intervertebral discs
  • Arthritis
  • protruding intervertebral discs
  • osteoporosis
  • Abnormal curvature of the spine

No matter how your back pain came about, you know what it feels like and how it can affect your daily life. Back pain is one of the most common reasons why people see a doctor or self-medicate.

types of back pain

When considering your treatment options for your back pain, it can help to understand the main types.

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Common types of back pain are:

1. Mechanical pain

Mechanical pain, also known as axial pain, is the most common cause of low back pain. The pain mainly comes from the ligaments, muscles, bones of the spine and the joints around them (sacroiliac joints, facet joints). Mechanical pain is usually located in the buttocks, lower back or upper legs.

Medical Marijuana for Chronic Back Pain - Marijuana Doctors (2)

Stress on the spine affects this pain, and various movements can change the sensation, such as:

  • meeting
  • To stay
  • to twist
  • activity
  • To relax

2. Radicular pain

Radicular pain occurs when the spinal nerve root becomes inflamed or compromised. The pain may include pain radiating down the leg or buttocks, or it may follow a specific nerve root pattern. You will experience a distinct sensation that is a kind of electric, sharp, burning pain, sometimes accompanied by weakness or numbness. You will likely only feel it on one side of your body.

3. Nociceptive pain

Your body has nociceptors, also known as sensors, that detect potentially harmful stimuli. Receptors alert you when you have an injury to tendons, ligaments, muscles, joints, skin, bones or other organs. Your central nervous system and brain receive pain signals that make you feel pain.

Many describe nociceptive pain as a throbbing, dull, aching, or aching sensation. Some examples of nociceptive pain associated with back pain may include:

  • Back pain after a fall or car accident
  • back pain after trauma
  • Arthritisschmerz
  • pain after back surgery

As your injury heals, the nociceptive pain subsides.

4. Neuropathy

Neuropathy, also known as neuropathic pain, is pain caused by injury or damage to nerve tissue. Nerve damage can result from an injury or infection elsewhere in the body. After sustaining damage, your nerves will continue to send pain signals even after the injury has healed.

Neuropathic pain related to the back causes the symptom known as sciatica. Sciatica occurs when the nerve root in the lower back is pinched or squeezed, causing numbness and pain along the sciatic nerve, which runs from the feet to the buttocks. You may also have pain that runs down your arm from your spine and persistent pain after back surgery.

Acute Pain vs Chronic Pain

Both nociceptive and neuropathic pain can be divided into acute pain and chronic pain. Both differ significantly in function and form.

Acute pain falls under the umbrella term of nociceptive pain. In the case of acute pain, the extent of tissue damage determines the severity of the pain. Sharp pain is a sign of diseased or injured tissue. Your body has a kind of protective reflex to avoid this pain. After healing, your pain will go away.

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Chronic pain has no protective reflex or other useful biological function. Instead, your nerves continue to send pain signals even after the initial tissue damage has healed. Chronic pain falls under the term neuropathy.

What causes back pain?

Sudden back pain that is sharp or no longer persistentsix weeksit can be caused by things like heavy lifting or falling. If it lasts longer than three months, it is considered chronic.

Back pain often occurs for no apparent reason, but your doctor may do an imaging study or test to determine the cause. Some medical conditions commonly associated with back pain are:

  • Ligament or muscle strain:A sudden awkward movement or repetitive lifting can strain the spinal ligaments or back muscles. If you are not in good physical condition, continued strain on your back can lead to painful muscle spasms.
  • Ruptured or bulged disks:Your discs act like cushions between the bones in your spine. You have soft material in your disc that could tear or bulge, putting pressure on a nerve. But you can also have a herniated disc or a bulging disc without back pain.
  • Arthritis:Osteoarthritis can affect the lower back. Spinal arthritis can sometimes narrow the space around the spinal cord. This is called spinal stenosis.
  • Skeletal irregularities:Irregularities can result from a condition known as scoliosis, which causes your spine to curve. It can cause back pain, but it usually doesn't cause pain until middle age. Other skeletal irregularities can also cause back pain.
  • Osteoporosis:The vertebrae in your spine can develop compression fractures if you have brittle, porous bones.

back pain statistics

Statistics on back pain show how common the condition is and how it affects individuals and society at large.

The American Chiropractic Association reports:

  • At any given time, around 31 million people in the United States suffer from back pain.
  • Every year, half of all working Americans report suffering from back pain.
  • According to experts, around 80% of the population will suffer from back pain at some point in their lives.

Die Bone and Joint Initiative excited:

  • The combined annual cost of lost wages due to back pain and medical expenses in the United States is approximately $253 billion.
  • Chronic back pain restricts the daily activities of an estimated 8.4 million people.
  • About nine percent of all emergency room and hospital admissions are diagnosed with neck or back pain.

Medical Marijuana for Chronic Back Pain - Marijuana Doctors (3)

history of back pain

Back pain has affected people throughout recorded history. However, the way back pain is understood and treated has changed. In the 19th century, two fundamental beliefs formed the basis of the modern approach that doctors use for back pain today:

  • Injury causes back pain
  • The back pain came from your spine

Researchers classified back pain as a rheumatic disease. During this time, doctors began to consider and treat back pain and sciatica together. The new orthopedic principle of therapeutic rest has increasingly dominated the treatment of this type of back pain. At the end of the 19th century, back pain began to be seen as a chronic disability. This only increased after World War II.

Back pain symptoms and side effects

Back pain produces a range of symptoms. The pain may be mild and only mildly dull, or it may be so intense that it is debilitating. Your back pain can come on suddenly or start slowly and gradually get worse over time - sometimes it comes and goes. The effects of your back pain can be both physical and mental.

Physical effects of back pain

Depending on what's causing your back pain, symptoms can present themselves in different ways. For example, you can try:

  • Aching or dull pain located in the lower back.
  • Burning or stabbing pain, which may or may not include sciatica, that spreads from the lower back to the back of the thighs and even to the feet.
  • Tightness and muscle spasms in the hips, lower back and pelvis.
  • Pain worsens after standing or sitting for a long time.
  • Difficulty walking, standing or changing from standing to sitting.

Psychological effects of back pain

When your back pain becomes chronic, it can also affect your mood and emotions. You could blame your back pain and claim that everything would be better if you didn't have back pain.

(Video) Medical Marijuana for Chronic Pain

chronic painit can affect your life and daily activities. It can make it difficult to remember things or concentrate. It may affect your sleep or appetite.

If you are in constant pain, you may worry that you may not be able to do your daily activities or go to work. All this increases stress and makes it understandable why some people get irritable,depressiveand scared.

People with chronic back pain also often struggle with depression. People with chronic pain are much more likely to be diagnosed with clinical depression or major depression. Depression like this is much more than a feeling of "blue" or normal sadness and is a common psychological consequence of constant back pain.

Current treatment options for back pain and their side effects

After performing a thorough exam, your doctor will likely give you an idea of ​​what's causing your back pain and other associated symptoms, and discuss your treatment options with you. Some treatments your doctor may recommend include:

1. Back surgery

If conservative treatments don't work and your pain persists, back surgery may be an option. There are different types of back surgery.

  • Laminectomia:During a laminectomy, your surgeon removes the bone covering your spinal canal. This procedure widens the spinal canal and relieves nerve pressure caused by spinal stenosis.
  • Discectomia:The surgeon removes the herniated disc, which is irritating your nerve and causing inflammation. They remove part or all of the back portion of your vertebra to access the ruptured disc.
  • Artificial intervertebral discs:Artificial disc implantation is an alternative spinal fusion treatment for painful movements between your two vertebrae caused by an injured or degenerated disc. However, most people do not get this new treatment option.
  • spinal fusion:The surgeon uses this treatment to permanently join two or more bones in the spine. It helps relieve pain by providing stability to a spinal fracture. It sometimes helps relieve painful movement between vertebrae caused by an injured or degenerated disc.

Before agreeing to any back surgery, you should get a second opinion from a qualified spine specialist. Spine surgeons may have different opinions about what type of surgery you need, when you need surgery, and whether your spine condition requires surgery. When you have back and leg pain, it may take more than one doctor to properly diagnose and treat it.

2. Chiropractic treatment

Many people with back pain seek treatment from a chiropractor. Chiropractors perform chiropractic adjustments using a small instrument or their hands to apply sudden, controlled force to the spinal joint. Also known as spinal manipulation, the goal of a chiropractic adjustment is to improve your body's physical function by correcting structural alignment.

When a trained or licensed professional performs a chiropractic adjustment, it is a safe procedure. Although rare, serious complications from this treatment can include:

  • Cauda equina syndrome, or pinched nerves at the bottom of the spine.
  • Worsening of a herniated disc, if you already have one, or a new herniated disc.
  • Vertebral artery dissection, a specific type of stroke, after manipulation of the neck.

No special preparation is required prior to your chiropractic adjustment.

3. Epidural steroid injections

Doctors have long administered epidural steroid injections to safely treat back, leg, arm and neck pain. Although rare, serious complications from these injections can include:

  • bleeding
  • Allergic reaction
  • paralysis
  • nerve damage
  • Infection

Having an experienced healthcare professional perform the injection under fluoroscopic guidance minimizes the risk of serious complications. Many patients tolerate this treatment well.

Book an appointment with a cannabis doctor

If you suffer from debilitating back pain and want to learn more about medical cannabis and back pain, visit a pharmacy or make an appointment with a qualified physician through and ourFind a medical locator today. Let us help improve your quality of life!

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1. UC San Diego Doctor Uses Cannabis To Treat Pain
(KPBS Public Media)
2. Can Marijuana Help Chronic Pain? | Marijuana
3. Medical Marijuana A Relief For Some Seeking To Manage Pain
(CBS Chicago)
4. Chronic pain patients talk medical marijuana as alternative to opiates
5. Marijuana Treatment for Back Pain?
6. Marijuana and chronic pain
(Demystifying Medicine McMaster)


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