CBD After Surgery Shows Promise in Reducing Postoperative Pain

A recent NYU Grossman School of Medicine study found a non-addictive, fast absorbing CBD composition composition designed to treat pain safely managed pain after minimally invasive rotator cuff surgery. Findings were presented in Chicago at the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) 2022 Annual Meeting.

The clinical trial randomly sorted 99 participants across 2 study sites (NY Langone Health and Baptist Health/Jacksonville Orthopaedic Institute). Participants ranged in age from 18 to 75. Some were prescribed a low dose of Percocet, and instructed to wean off the narcotic as soon as possible, and to take the placebo/CBD 3 times a day for 14 days after the surgery. 

On day one post surgery, patients receiving CBD experienced on average 23% less pain as measured by the visual analog scale (VAS) pain score compared to patients receiving the placebo, highlighting that in patients with moderate pain, CBD may render a significant benefit. On both the first and second days after surgery, patients receiving CBD reported 22 to 25 percent greater satisfaction with pain control compared to those receiving placebo. Further analysis also showed that patients receiving 50 mg of CBD reported lower pain and higher satisfaction with pain control compared to patients receiving placebo. No major side effects were reported.

“There is an urgent need for viable alternatives for pain management, and our study presents this form of CBD as a promising tool after arthroscopic rotator cuff repair,” says lead investigator Michael J. Alaia, MD, associate professor in the Department of Orthopedic Surgery. “It could be a new, inexpensive approach for delivering pain relief, and without the side effects of anti-inflammatory drugs like NSAIDs and addiction risks linked to opiates. Additionally, CBD has the benefit of pain relief without the psychotropic effects associated with THC or marijuana.”

This study was also referenced in Arthritis and Sports, a Virginia-based Orthopaedic, Physical Therapy, and Wellness provider.