NEW YORK – Migraine sufferers are turning to cannabis and cannabinoids to reduce the intensity of pain symptoms, according to a new study released by Healint, a leading provider of healthcare technology. According to data gathered through Healint’s Migraine Buddy, a global migraine tracking app, 30 percent of migraine patients in the U.S. have used cannabis to relieve migraine pain and 82 percent of those surveyed found it useful to reduce the pain level.
“Cannabis is becoming a prominent treatment option for chronic pain patients, especially for migraineurs,” said Healint CEO and co-founder Francois Cadiou. “With more and more states across the United States legalizing medical marijuana, migraine patients are becoming acquainted with cannabis as a natural remedy that can help alleviate migraines and even prevent them. Research about the benefits of cannabis use among migraine patients is slowly emerging, but more must be done to properly inform individuals about the use and dosage of medical marijuana to treat migraines.”
The study surveyed 9,885 Migraine Buddy users in the U.S. and Canada to measure medical marijuana use among migraine patients and its effectiveness as a migraine treatment. Nearly 40 million Americans, including 28 million women, suffer from disabling migraine attacks, and as medical cannabis continues to be legalized in most states, migraineurs are finding that cannabis can decrease the intensity of migraine attacks.
While research into the effectiveness of cannabis as a migraine treatment is still ongoing, a study published in The Journal of Pain in November 2019 found that the severity of headaches and migraines was reduced by approximately 50 percent when individuals inhaled cannabis. Similarly, a study published in Pharmacotherapy found that 40 percent of patients who were recommended to use cannabis as treatment for migraine experienced a decrease in migraine frequency from 10.4 migraines per month to 4.6. Another study published in Neurology found that patients surveyed reported a 42.1 percent decrease in their average monthly migraine frequency.
“Migraines are extremely debilitating for individuals and significantly impact their ability to perform day-to-day activities,” said Dr. Andrew Rizzo, an Emergency Medicine physician with a specialty in Addiction Medicine in Brooklyn, NY. “As more research is conducted on the effects of cannabis on headache and migraine, cannabis is proving to be an effective medication that can help migraineurs better manage their condition. And while the increase in research looking at the correlation between cannabis use and migraine frequency is a positive sign, we urgently need more studies to be conducted on the proper administration method and dosage to better inform our patients.”
The survey findings were collected through the Migraine Buddy app, which allows users to record key data about the duration, frequency, and intensity of their attacks and medication use, as well as information about sleep, dietary, and weather-related triggers, all of which can be shared with their physician electronically or in person. Recent Migraine Buddy data gathered and analyzed found that stress-related attacks surged during the first weeks and months of the onset of COVID-19 pandemic, highlighting the urgency to identify new solutions to alleviate pain among migraineurs.
Healint is a leading maker of healthcare technology used all over the world for chronic pain management. Healint leverages innovative techniques in software, data science and user experience design to empower people to manage their chronic conditions and diseases. Healint’s first global program – the Migraine Buddy platform and its apps – helps a thriving community of users manage and track their migraines.