COVID-19 and Cannabis Use

 

By completing the survey you are consenting to participate in the study.

Click here: https://redcap.cheori.org/surveys/?s=R33FANX9CY

 

From CHEO:

We are conducting an online survey for research being conducted at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) and we would greatly appreciate if you can complete the brief survey yourself, as well as to forward this invitation to your contacts as an email, or you can share in your social networks (e.g. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) in an attempt to get more people to respond. The survey link and QR code can be found after the project description below.

INVITATION TO PARTICIPATE IN A SURVEY ON THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON CANNABIS CONSUMPTION

You are being invited to complete a short survey to provide your opinion on how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted your use of cannabis.

This study is being done because Cannabis continues to be legalized in more and more countries and is being used for the medical treatment of multiple diseases and disorders. We are interested in examining how COVID-19 has impacted your personal experience with cannabis, and one of the ways researchers look at this is by asking about things like education and employment, and whether you live in an urban or a rural neighborhood. You do not have to answer any question that you do not feel comfortable answering.

Taking part in this study is voluntary (completely up to you). If you decide to take part, it will take about 15 minutes to complete the study. You are free to withdraw from (leave) the study at any time and there will be no penalty to you. We expect to invite more than 1000 people to take part in the study.

In a multiple choice format you will be asked if COVID-19 has impacted your school or your work or the quality of your sleep. You will also be asked questions on your cannabis use before COVID-19 as well as cannabis use while you are living through COVID-19.

All information we gather will be kept strictly confidential. It will not be shared with anyone outside of our research team. When we publish or present the results of this study, we will not show any information that could identify you. We will keep all survey data in a locked filing cabinet and on a password-protected computer at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO). When we are finished the research study, we will keep the data for 7 years after the last publication of this study. Then we will destroy the data.

You may or may not directly benefit from the study. However, your input and perspective would be of tremendous value to us. The risks of participating in this study may be feeling uncomfortable with some of the questions. You can choose not to answer any questions you do not want to answer and you can leave the study at any time without finishing.

 

By completing the survey you are consenting to participate in the study.

Click here: https://redcap.cheori.org/surveys/?s=R33FANX9CY

Irritable Bowel Syndrome & Cannabis

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

IBS is a common and chronic health issue affecting the large intestine and is characterized into three sub-types; IBS with predominant constipation, predominant diarrhea, or a combination of both. Symptoms also include abdominal cramps/pain/bloating, excess gas, and mucus in the stool. Although the precise cause of  IBS is unknown, IBS involves problems with moving digested food through the intestines and how the brain interprets messages from the intestinal nerves, infection, weak intestinal contractions, intestinal inflammation, changes to the gut flora, abnormalities in the intestinal nerves, and so forth.

Triggers can include hormones (women are twice as likely to develop IBS), stress (may aggravate IBS symptoms but is NOT the cause), and food (can be worsened with consumption of dairy products, beans, wheat, citrus fruits, carbonated drinks, etc).

It might be interesting to learn that we have cannabinoid chemicals within our bodies as part of our endocannabinoid system. The system is not perfectly understood, but we know that it consists of cannabinoid receptors and endocannabinoid chemicals.

The receptors are located all throughout our central and peripheral nervous systems, and a large number of them are also located within our digestive system, which has led scientists to investigate ways to use them to help with conditions like Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and peptic ulcer disease.

Approximately 18% of Canadians have IBS yet, only about ½ have been diagnosed by their primary care provider (PCP). For many, it can take several years before receiving a definitive diagnosis of IBS. As a result, people may develop and experience mood changes related to anxiety, fatigue, embarrassment, self-consciousness, and depression. In turn, this can lead to interpersonal conflict, limit time spent with family and friends, and negatively affect work performance.

The ROME IV Diagnostic Criteria for IBS is used primarily by PCPs to help with the diagnosis of IBS. Risk factors include family history of IBS, being female, younger than 50 years old, and existing mental health problems. Long term complications can lead to hemorrhoids, diarrhea, chronic constipation, mood disorders, and overall poor quality of life.

If you think you suffer from IBS, and would like to speak with one of our physicians regarding medical cannabis therapy please visit www.spartanwellness.ca and fill out the interest form and one of our staff will be in contact with in 24-48 hours.

Additional info:

Canadian Digestive Health Foundation (https://cdhf.ca/)

Irritable Bowel Syndrome Self Help and Support Group (https://www.ibsgroup.org/)

The Mayo Clinic (https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/irritable-bowel-syndrome/symptoms-causes/syc-20360016)

Mount Sinai Hospital Toronto (http://www.mountsinai.on.ca/care/fammed/patient-resources/nutrition/irritable-bowel-syndrome-ibs.pdf/view)

National institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/digestive-diseases/irritable-bowel-syndrome)

https://www.verywellhealth.com/medical-marijuana-for-ibs-4115436

Lumbago – Tips to Relieve Pain and Discomfort

Lumbago is the most common form of low back pain. It is caused by cramping of the spinal muscles, joint dysfunction, ergonomics, exercise, obesity, sedentary lifestyle, injuries and trauma to the lower back and/or surrounding tissues/muscles, sprains and strains, and so forth. Pain can radiate to other parts of the body including the upper legs (i.e. sciatica – where the sciatic nerve may become compressed and there is electrical shock type of pain). On average, 5 out of 10 Canadian suffer from. Up to 85% of working people will experience lumbago during their lifetime. Research has demonstrated that opioids are not effective in treating and managing lumbago. Instead, patients are encouraged to use manual therapy (i.e. Massage Therapy, Physiotherapy), physical activity, psychological therapies (i.e. support groups, chronic pain clinics’ group sessions), and self-management (i.e. limiting exposure to triggers, not lifting more than 10lbs). There is less emphasis on the pharmacological and surgical approach for chronic lumbago.

No matter what the cause of lumbago, here are a few suggestions to help relieve pain and discomfort and potentially prevent future complications:

  • Maintain correct posture
  • Use ice or heat (i.e. <72 hours use ice, >72 hours use heat)
  • Maintain correct posture while sitting
  • Stretch your muscles
  • Strengthen your core muscles
  • Invest in ergonomic office chair
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Safeguard your back while lifting
  • Rest your back after prolonged bending
  • Protect your discs immediately after waking (i.e. maintaining a straight back for 1-2 hours after waking allows your discs to regain their normal pressure and withstand loads more effectively)
  • Stretch your hamstrings
  • Stay active
  • Get a massage
  • Wear proper footwear (i.e. orthotics)
  • Sleep on a quality mattress
  • Consider OTC (over the counter) pain relievers for acute pain or flare-up (i.e. Ibuprofen)

 

 

Additional resources:

The Canadian Chiropractic Association (https://www.chiropractic.ca/blog/canadas-low-back-pain-epidemic)

The Centre for Effective Practice CORE Back Tool (https://cep.health/clinical-products/low-back-pain/)

The Mayo Clinic (https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/back-pain/symptoms-causes/syc-20369906)