It has already been proven that medical marijuana has a great pain-killing effect. However, a new study has shown that weed smoking affects men and women differently.
A study that was conducted by scientists at the Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) revealed that males experienced greater pain relief than females after smoking cannabis. The study findings were recently brought to public notice by the online edition of the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence.
Though there was anecdotal evidence of the different influence of weed-infused products on males and females, no scientific studies had been carried out on humans yet.
Ziva Cooper, Ph.D. and assistant professor of clinical neurobiology, in cooperation with other researchers at CUMC, analyzed data collected from their two double-blinded, placebo-controlled studies that had investigated the analgesic effects of recreational marijuana on 42 adult smokers. After randomly selected participants smoked active marijuana or placebo, they immersed one hand in cold water until they could not tolerate the pain. Thereafter, they answered a short pain questionnaire.
Those males who smoked active marijuana reported significant relief from pain and increase in pain tolerance, while among females, the pain sensitivity was not significantly increased, but they also experienced a short-term increase in pain tolerance while stoned.
A different analgesic effect of marijuana was noticed in men and women, but no sex-dependent differences in how intoxicated participants felt or how much they liked the cannabis high were reported.
The researchers underlined the importance of further studies on cannabis-induced analgesia in both men and women to understand the factors that impacted the cannabinoids' analgesic action by investigating other methods of cannabis delivery (smoked against oral), weed potency, as well as the frequency of use and type of pain measured. Such studies will allow medical cannabis doctors to better understand the potential therapeutic effects and side effects of marijuana-based products for men and women separately.