• Cancer occurs when cells proliferate uncontrollably and spread to other parts of the body. Cancer may start in billions of cells that make up the human body(1).
  • Compounds from the Cannabis sativa plant have shown promise in treating cancer-related pain(2). The research examines the efficacy of cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in managing cancer-associated pain(3).
  • Despite many anecdotal accounts of CBD’s promise for cancer pain relief, scientific trials have yet to demonstrate its efficacy, and further research is warranted.

CBD Mg for Cancer Pain

Many cancer patients experience chronic pain, which can be caused by cancer treatment or various factors, such as the type of cancer or stage(4). Cancer is considered a severe and debilitating illness affecting a person’s quality of life.

Cancer patients’ standard treatment for chronic or neuropathic pain usually focuses on opioid analgesics(5)

However, the treatment can be problematic for some patients due to various factors, such as the side effects of these drugs and the varying levels of responses(6).

Opioids are often used to help with pain in cancer patients. However, improper dosing can lead to overdosing and dependency. Therefore, it is essential to identify effective alternative analgesics.

Compounds derived from the Cannabis Sativa plant have shown promise in relieving the pain associated with cancer treatment(7). Some examples of these include cannabidiol or CBD and tetrahydrocannabinol(8).

CBD may interact with the endocannabinoid system’s cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2) to elicit a physiological response(9). Aside from cannabinoid receptors, the endocannabinoid system or ECS also comprises enzymes and endogenous cannabinoids. 

Phytocannabinoids, including CBD, may interact with the ECS components or other biological pathways, affecting the progression of diseases like cancer(10)

In a clinical study, the effects of cannabinoids on tumor growth have been studied. However, these effects depend on the drug’s dose and concentration(11).

Understanding how cannabinoids can regulate the various cellular processes involved in cancer development is essential for developing practical new therapeutic approaches.

Research on CBD for Cancer Pain Management

Adequate management of chronic and neuropathic pain is a critical issue for patients with cancer. 

A study examined the various clinical studies investigating the efficacy of cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in managing cancer-associated pain(12).

Five studies evaluating the effects of cannabis on cancer pain were discovered in a review of the literature published between 1975 and 2017. These studies demonstrated that cannabis may help alleviate pain(13).

In another clinical study, the effects of cannabinoids on tumor growth have been studied. However, these effects still depend on the drug’s dose and concentration(14).

Understanding how cannabinoids may regulate the various cellular processes involved in cancer development is essential for developing practical new therapeutic approaches.

Dosing Guidelines

CBD may be taken in various ways since there is no standard dosage for pain management. Each individual’s health status and genetic makeup may dictate how CBD for pain is administered(15).

Individuals suffering from specific medical disorders, for example, should begin with modest dosages and progressively increase them over time(16).

Side Effects

CBD has a favorable safety profile, and any side effects are almost certainly the result of drug interactions(17).  

Among the minor side effects of CBD are the following(18):

  • tiredness
  • diarrhea
  • changes in appetite or weight

What Is Cancer?

Cancer is a disease in which some cells develop uncontrollably and spread to other body parts. Cancer may originate almost anywhere in the human body’s billions of cells(19)

Human cells often divide and expand (a process called cell division) to create new cells as needed by the body. When cells die due to aging or injury, they are replaced by new ones(20).

What Is CBD Oil?

CBD oil is classified as full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, or isolates. 

Full-spectrum CBD oil contains all compounds of the cannabis plant, including terpenes, flavonoids, and other cannabinoids. This CBD variant also has less than 0.3% THC concentration.

Terpenes are chemical compounds present in plants that contribute to their distinctive aroma(21). Meanwhile, flavonoids may have antioxidant properties(22).

Broad-spectrum CBD oil is composed of the same chemicals as full-spectrum products, except THC.

CBD isolates are made of pure CBD. CBD isolates lack the additional chemicals or cannabinoids present in full-spectrum or broad-spectrum products.

Benefits of CBD 

Various types of CBD compounds can be used to manage pain, such as oils, capsules, or sprays containing either THC or CBD. There are studies conducted to investigate the effects of these compounds on different pain pathways.

Cannabis, sometimes called marijuana, has enough THC to cause euphoria, whereas CBD has no psychoactive effect. 

Aside from managing cancer pain, CBD has other potential benefits for the following medical conditions:

  • insomnia(23)
  • depression, anxiety, mental disorders(24)
  • seizures(25)
  • inflammation and pain(26)
  • inflammatory bowel disease(27)

There are anecdotal reports about CBD’s potential for cancer pain and other medical conditions. However, the effectiveness of CBD has not yet been confirmed in clinical trials. Thus, more conclusive studies are needed.

Legality

The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has only authorized the use of one CBD product. Epidiolex is a prescription medication for the treatment of seizures associated with Lennox Gastaut syndrome (LGS), Dravet syndrome (DS), or tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) in individuals one year of age or older(28).

Meanwhile, cannabis and cannabis-related products with a THC content of more than 0.3% are classified as Schedule 1 controlled substances, rendering them illegal. However, industrial hemp or CBD, or cannabis with a low THC content, became legal in 2018(29).


  1. What Is Cancer?
    https://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/understanding/what-is-cancer
  2. Cannabinoids in cancer treatment: Therapeutic potential and legislation
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6387667/
  3. A selective review of medical cannabis in cancer pain management
    https://apm.amegroups.com/article/view/16199/18209
  4. Facts About Cancer Pain
    https://www.cancer.org/treatment/treatments-and-side-effects/physical-side-effects/pain/facts-about-cancer-pain.html
  5. Opioids for Cancer Pain
    https://www.cancer.org/treatment/treatments-and-side-effects/physical-side-effects/pain/opioid-pain-medicines-for-cancer-pain.html
  6. Ibid
  7. Cannabinoids in cancer treatment: Therapeutic potential and legislation
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6387667/
  8. Ibid.
  9. Cannabinoid Receptors and the Endocannabinoid System: Signaling and Function in the Central Nervous System
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5877694/
  10. Cannabinoids in cancer treatment: Therapeutic potential and legislation
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6387667/
  11. Ibid.
  12. A selective review of medical cannabis in cancer pain management
    https://apm.amegroups.com/article/view/16199/18209
  13. Ibid.
  14. Cannabinoids in cancer treatment: Therapeutic potential and legislation
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6387667/
  15. CBD dosing
    https://www.projectcbd.org/guidance/cbd-dosing
  16. Ibid.
  17. Cannabidiol (CBD)-what we know and what we don’t
    https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/cannabidiol-cbd-what-we-know-and-what-we-dont-2018082414476
  18. An Update on Safety and Side Effects of Cannabidiol: A Review of Clinical Data and Relevant Animal Studies
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5569602/
  19. What Is Cancer?
    https://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/understanding/what-is-cancer
  20. Ibid.
  21. Therapeutic and Medicinal Uses of Terpenes
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7120914/
  22. Flavonoids: an overview
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5465813/
  23. Cannabis, Cannabinoids, and Sleep: a Review of the Literature
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28349316/
  24. Cannabidiol: A Potential New Alternative for the Treatment of Anxiety, Depression, and Psychotic Disorders
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7699613/
  25. Use of Cannabidiol in the Treatment of Epilepsy: Efficacy and Security in Clinical Trials
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6514832/
  26. Cannabidiol: A Brief Review of Its Therapeutic and Pharmacologic Efficacy in the Management of Joint Disease
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7176325/
  27. Cannabidiol in inflammatory bowel diseases: a brief overview
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22815234/
  28. What You Need to Know (And What We’re Working to Find Out) About Products Containing Cannabis or Cannabis-derived Compounds, Including CBD
    https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/what-you-need-know-and-what-were-working-find-out-about-products-containing-cannabis-or-cannabis
  29. US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). What You Need to Know
    https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/what-you-need-know-and-what-were-working-find-out-about-products-containing-cannabis-or-cannabis
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