New study aims to examine whole-plant marijuana as treatment for sports injuries

 In Health, Lifestyle, National News

A push for cannabidiol research has gained steam in recent months, with current and former NFL players backing two studies on CBD’s efficacy in alleviating football-related pain without getting them high. But another study, led by a California-based cannabis extract producer Constance Therapeutics and the Gridiron Cannabis Coalition, aims to examine whether whole-plant cannabis derived from marijuana is more effective than isolated compounds in treating players’ pain.

Led by Dutch researcher Dr. Arno Hazekamp, the study will include approximately 30 former NFL players in California, where marijuana is legal for medicinal purposes and soon could be legal for recreational use, as well. The players will be administered marijuana, via vapor or tincture, and monitored to determine the drug’s effectiveness in alleviating their pain and symptoms from concussions. The study, funded by donors and Constance Therapeutics, is expected to start later this summer with no set end date.

Chris Kluwe, a former punter who played nine years in the NFL, is among those who have volunteered to participate. Kluwe used marijuana during his career and still uses it in retirement to ease lingering pain from four knee surgeries and years of wear and tear. The study, he says, is key to not only promoting awareness of alternative, and possibly safer, pain relievers than the narcotics players often receive from teams, but to also prompt the NFL and players association to revise the substance-abuse policy.

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