Medical Cannabis A Focus on Use in Chronic Pain- Pharmacy Technician




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Cannabis has been legalized, decriminalized or approved for medical use in every US state except Alabama, Idaho, Kansas, South Carolina, Tennessee, Wisconsin,and Wyoming. The number of medical Cannabis users in the US is somewhere between 3 and 9 million. A review of individual states’ registries shows that the overwhelming majority of medical cannabis users are managing pain. Because most registries are designed to access and track tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)-type Cannabis products, the reasons for using cannabidiol (CBD) products are less clear. An online survey of 2,409 patients found that CBD was used for a variety of medical conditions, most frequently chronic pain, arthritis/joint pain, and anxiety. Although medical Cannabis may not be an item offered in most pharmacies, the American Pharmacy Association (APhA) released a policy statement in 2015 advocating for pharmacists to “collect and document information in the pharmacy patient profile about the use of Cannabis and its various components and provide appropriate patient counseling.” Many health care providers feel there isn’t enough information about Cannabis available to support evidence-based decision making. While that may be true, health care providers can participate in the collection of practice-based evidence and patient experience, as suggested by the APhA. This facilitates shared decision making and supports the effort to achieve optimal health care. This issue provides an overview of the physiological and clinical effects of Cannabis-based compounds and dosage forms. It is intended to help providers counsel patients about the potential benefit, or lack of benefit, of Cannabis for various types of chronic pain, and discuss safety considerations.


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Course Information

Target Audience

Tech Drug Therapy


Heesoo Kim
Kari Franson
PharmD, PhD, BCPP
Knowledge Level

General Overview

This activity will apply to a broad range of learning needs/pharmacy settings. It may include common disease state/therapy overivews and/or general pharmacy needs such as medication errors, immunizations, or law topics.

Learning Objectives

  • Discuss the rationale for use of the cannabinoids THC and CBD in various chronic pain syndromes. Interpret clinical study results of these compounds for effectiveness in chronic pain. 
  • Discuss the impact of Cannabis use on opioid use in patients with chronic, refractory pain.
  • Describe the acute and long-term risks of Cannabis. 
  • Review various administration methods for Cannabis and the pharmacokinetic differences among them.

Course Accreditation

  • Activity Type:
  • CE Broker
  • Universal Activity Number:
    Pharmacy Technician : 0798-0000-21-189-H01-T
PharmCon is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education as a provider of continuing pharmacy education.

PharmCon, Inc. is an approved course provider for continuing education for nurses by the Florida Board of Nursing. PharmCon is also recognized by the California Board of Nursing as a provider of nursing programs.

Credit for this program is issued by passing the final test hosted at with a score of 70% or higher.

Technology Requirements

  • Hardware Requirements
    Standard Windows/Mac System
    iPad or iPhone
    Minimum screen resolution: 1024x768
  • Software Requirements
    Standard Windows/Mac System
    iPad or iPhone
    Minimum screen resolution: 1024x768
  • Network Requirements
    Broadband Internet Connection:
    T1, Hi-speed DSL or Cable
    4G cellular connection
Computer sharing is NOT permitted due to accreditation guidelines on activity monitoring. Credit is earned by one user per device.