By Roland Sebestyén
In a historic move, the leading international medical journal Neuropsychopharmacology Reports has published the clinical outcomes of the first cohort of patients captured in the UK Medical Cannabis Registry and it is reported that medical cannabis use resulted in significant improvements in anxiety, pain and sleep for patients.
These patients are among the first to be prescribed this treatment in the UK since medical cannabis has been legalised in November 2018.
The UK Medical Cannabis Registry is the first such database in the UK and has been set up by clinicians at Sapphire Medical Clinics, a multi-award-winning medical cannabis clinic, and is open to all UK patients.
Dr Simon Erridge, Head of Research and Access at Sapphire Medical, said: “We are very pleased to see the first peer-reviewed publication of outcomes of medical cannabis patients since legalisation in print, which suggests that these treatments are safe and well-tolerated in this patient group.
“By placing data collection at the heart of our clinical processes we hope to contribute to the evidence base and thereby allow more patients to access these treatments on the NHS.”
Analysis of patient-reported outcome measures following treatment with cannabis-based medicinal products (CBMPs) in this study found statistically significant improvements in anxiety, pain and sleep quality scores as well as the general quality of life at one and three months following treatment.
The study analysed clinical outcomes of the first 129 patients enrolled in the Registry and found that CBMPs was well tolerated with a side effect rate of 24 per 100 patients, which compares favourably to painkillers such as morphine or codeine.
The UK Medical Cannabis Registry records patient‐reported outcome measures (PROMs), clinical effectiveness measures, and adverse event (side effect) questionnaires which are remotely administered to patients through an online web‐based platform at baseline, one month, three months, six months, and then six-monthly intervals thereafter.
This forms part of the Real-World Evidence platform, which now includes over 2,000 patients.
Dr Mikael Sodergren, Managing Director and Academic Lead at Sapphire Medical, added: “It has been great to see that patients at Sapphire overwhelmingly welcome contributing to this kind of data collection which will advance our understanding of the benefits of medical cannabis treatment.
“The feedback that we received is that patients also really like monitoring their own response to treatment, so we are pleased to be able to enrol all our patients in the UK Medical Cannabis Registry.
“While the findings of this study are encouraging, they have to be treated with caution given the limited scope of this initial analysis which does not have a placebo or active comparator.”
If you’re interested in the topic, you can read the study here on this link.