Cannabis and Migraine


Patients with chronic migraine who turn to cannabis to relieve headache pain may be setting themselves up for medication overuse headache, preliminary research suggests.

Researchers at Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California, found a significant increase in the likelihood of medication overuse headache (rebound headache) in chronic migraine patients who use cannabis.

This study shows that there is some kind of association between cannabis use and medication overuse headache in people with chronic migraine

Medication overuse occurs in about 1% to 3% of the general population. It affects nearly one third of the patients (mostly patients with chronic migraine) seen at tertiary care centers

The researchers reviewed the records of 368 adults who experienced chronic migraine (15 or more migraine days per month) for at least 1 year.

Of the 368 patients, 150 were using cannabis, and 218 were not. In addition, 212 had medication overuse headache, and 156 did not.

Results showed that patients who used cannabis were nearly six times more likely to have medication overuse headache than those who did not use cannabis (odds ratio, 5.99; 95% CI, 3.45 - 10.43; P < .0001).