Examination of the effects of cannabidiol on menstrual-related symptoms

Exp Clin Psychopharmacol. 2024 Mar 7. doi: 10.1037/pha0000709. Online ahead of print.


Some individuals attempt to alleviate menstrual-related symptoms (MRS) by using cannabis and report having expectations that cannabis can improve MRS; however, no study has examined the effect of cannabinoids on MRS. The present study is a pre-post, randomized, open-label trial that aimed to examine the effects of oral cannabidiol (CBD) isolate for alleviating MRS. Participants were assigned randomly to one of two open-label dosing groups of CBD softgels (160 mg twice a day, BID, n = 17; 320 mg BID, n = 16) and completed a 1-month baseline period. Following baseline, participants were instructed to consume CBD starting the first day they believed they experienced symptoms each month and to take their assigned dose daily for 5 consecutive days for three CBD-consumption months. We examined differences in MRS and related outcomes between baseline and 3 months of CBD consumption. Results revealed reductions (in both dosing groups) in MRS, irritability, anxiety, global impression of change, stress, and subjective severity scores when comparing baseline to all 3 months of CBD consumption. Depression scores did not change in either dosing group. Findings suggest that CBD may have the potential for managing MRS. Importantly, changes in symptoms appeared in the first month of CBD consumption and persisted over the 3 consumption months. Further research is warranted comparing the effects of CBD to placebo (a limitation of the study) and examining the potential to optimize CBD consumption for reducing MRS (e.g., combining CBD with terpenes; varying routes and timing of administration). (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2024 APA, all rights reserved).

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