Demystifying Cannabis: A Review of Its Pharmacology, Use in Pain, and Safety Concerns

The uses for cannabis and its synthetic derivatives continue to grow, as the regulatory status surrounding the drug becomes more legalized. Cannabis is composed of many chemical compounds, called cannabinoids, of which cannabidiol and 9-tetrahydrocannabinol have been studied for medicinal uses. As a modality for treatment of pain, cannabis may have benefit for use in treatment of neuropathic pain, with limited data for use in rheumatic pain.

However, there are both short-term and long-term adverse effects with cannabis use that should be monitored in those who use cannabis for medicinal purposes, which include worsened anxiety and potential development of cannabis use disorder.