The practice of taking very small, sub-perceptual doses of a compound — microdosing — is almost exclusively associated with psychedelics. Some medical marijuana users, however, have claimed that microdosing THC has its own benefits, something a new study substantiates. The research comes from Israeli medical technology company Syqe Medical, which reports that microdosing THC may have a profound impact on chronic pain.
Some compounds most commonly known for their recreational use may also have some medical benefits, including things like psilocybin to treat cluster headaches and ketamine for treatment-resistant depression. Cannabis (“marijuana”) is one such compound with potential medical uses, including THC, the med-tech company reports.
The study found that 500 micrograms of THC, the psychoactive compound in cannabis, can offer pain relief without the associated ‘high’ caused by the plant. Patients in the study would inhale the THC, taking three to four puffs per day of up to 500 micrograms — this is considerably less than the estimated 150,000 micrograms that typical medical cannabis patients use daily.
How does one take such small doses of THC? The researchers used the Syqe Selective-Dose Inhaler, a tool offering a very high degree of dosing precision. This is the first time a study has demonstrated that THC microdosing does, in fact, have some sort of notable impact on the patients who take it.
The THC microdoses weren’t found to have any significant side effects, such as the kind that may occur with taking high doses of the substance. Syqe Medical CEO Perry Davidson said:
This study is the first to show that human sensitivity to THC is significantly greater than previously assumed, indicating that if we can treat patients with much higher precision, lower quantities of drug will be needed, resulting in fewer side effects and an overall more effective treatment. The Syqe drug delivery technology is also applicable to opioids and other compounds that, while potentially effective, are notoriously associated with dangerous side effects. The introduction of a tool to prescribe medications at such low doses with such high resolution may allow us to achieve treatment outcomes that previously were not possible.