Research Roundup

Debbie Rigby takes a look at the latest in research news

Effect of cannabis use in people with chronic non-cancer pain prescribed opioids

Findings from a 4 year prospective Australian study of 1,514 people with chronic non-cancer pain prescribed opioids showed no evidence that cannabis use improved patient outcomes. People who used cannabis had greater pain and lower self-efficacy in managing pain, and there was no evidence that cannabis use reduced pain severity or interference or exerted an opioid-sparing effect. They also had greater generalised anxiety disorder severity scores.

Lancet Public Health 2018;3(7):e341-e350


Anticonvulsants in the treatment of low back pain and lumbar radicular pain

A systematic review and meta-analysis has concluded that anticonvulsants are ineffective for treatment of low back pain or lumbar radicular pain. there was high-quality evidence of no effect of gabapentinoids versus placebo on chronic low back pain in the short term, and high-quality evidence that gabapentinoids have a higher risk for adverse events.

CMAJ July 03, 2018 190 (26) E786-E793.

Maintenance use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and risk of gastrointestinal cancer

A Nationwide Swedish population-based cohort study (2005–2012) has shown that long-term use of (low-dose) aspirin and non-selective NSAIDs was associated with a decreased risk of all gastrointestinal cancer types. Long-term use (³180 days) of aspirin clearly reduced the risk for gastrointestinal cancer, but increased risk for short-term users. Users of non-selective NSAIDs showed an overall decreased incidence (21%) of gastrointestinal cancer.

BMJ Open 2018;8:e021869.

Community Pharmacists’ Contribution to Medication Reviews for Older Adults

A systematic review of 16 articles has concluded that medication review interventions by community pharmacists seem to reduce drug‐related problems and increase medication adherence. Community pharmacists’ contributions to reviewing medications varied from 12 medication review interventions, of which 6 were compliance and concordance reviews, 4 were clinical medication reviews, and 2 were prescription reviews.

J Am Geriatr Soc, first published 4 July 2018.

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