The role of cannabis in treatment-resistant fibromyalgia women

Pain Pract. 2023 Feb;23(2):180-184. doi: 10.1111/papr.13179. Epub 2022 Nov 9.


Background: Fibromyalgia is a complex pain-focused syndrome. Previous studies showed that Cannabis is efficacious in promoting sleep, deepening and lengthening the sleep cycle, and good pain relief (compared with the SSRIs and SNRIs).

Purpose: This study aimed to use the World Health Organization Quality of Life Bref questionnaire (WhoQoL-bref) to characterize the impact of Cannabis Treatment initiation on the quality of life in women suffering from treatment-resistant fibromyalgia.

Methods: A prospective cohort study involving 30 women aged 18-70 years old diagnosed with fibromyalgia, exhausted pharmacological fibromyalgia treatment, and started Cannabis treatment. Pregnant women were excluded. WhoQoL-bref was filled before Cannabis treatment initiation and 1 month following treatment.

Results: Women's average age was 46 years (±5), with a poor general quality of life (1.47 ± 0.63), poor general health (1.47 ± 0.78), pain and discomfort, and dependence on medication (3.77 ± 1.3 and 3.07 ± 1.74, respectively) prior to Cannabis intervention. Cannabis treatment for 30 days showed a marked improvement in general quality of life (1.97 scores, p < 0.01), general health (1.83, p < 0.01), physical health (1.5, p < 0.01), and psychological domain (1.3, p < 0.01). Financial resources and home environment were not influenced by cannabis treatment (p = 0.07, p = 0.31, respectively).

Conclusion: Results suggest a potentially significant role of Cannabis in treatment-resistant Fibromyalgia women. Early Cannabis treatment may result in a beneficial short-term effect on the quality of life through its influence on pain, sleep, and physical and psychological domains. Further studies are still indicated to understand this potential and its long-term beneficial impact.

Keywords: cannabis; fibromyalgia; pain; quality of life; treatment; woman.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cannabis*
  • Female
  • Fibromyalgia* / drug therapy
  • Fibromyalgia* / psychology
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain
  • Pregnancy
  • Prospective Studies
  • Quality of Life / psychology
  • Young Adult