The use of cannabinoids in the treatment of pain in patients with sickle cell disease
Keywords:Cannabis sativa, Medical Marijuana, Sickle Cell Disease, Analgesia
AbstractSickle Cell Disease (SCD) is characterized by chronic pain with acute intermittent painful vaso-occlusive crises. Recently, several new drugs have demonstrated efficacy in preventing or reducing the frequency of vaso-occlusive pain attacks. However, therapies for chronic pain in SCD remain poorly investigated. Opioids remain the mainstay of treatment, despite disadvantages that include constipation, pruritus, respiratory depression, and risk of addiction. Among the options for the treatment of various painful conditions, cannabinoids have been increasingly considered and may be an option for the treatment of pain in SCD. The aim of this study was to determine the extent of the use of Cannabis sativa for the relief of pain and other symptoms and its side effects in patients with SCD. The present study used the PubMed platform, conducting a literature review from bibliographic searches of published articles using the descriptors “cannabinoid and sickle cell disease”, “cannabis and sickle cell disease” and “marijuana and sickle cell disease”. The studies establish a rationale for investigating the possible therapeutic effects of C. sativa or cannabinoids in SCD. Medical marijuana can reduce the illegal use of marijuana and the related risks and costs for patients with sickle cell disease.
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