The University of Sydney launches quality-of-life study into medical cannabis

The University of Sydney has launched a major longitudinal study to assess the changes in quality of life for patients prescribed with medicinal cannabis.

Researchers announced the wide-ranging study titled The Quality of Life Evaluation Study (The QUEST Initiative) and its aim to be one of the world’s largest studies examining the quality of life outcomes for medical cannabis patients.

“While there are more and more clinical trials of cannabinoid-based medicines being commissioned, longitudinal studies into the long term effects on quality of life are limited, so we will be monitoring this study closely.” - Will Douglas, COO at NUBU Pharmaceuticals

To achieve statistical relevance The QUEST Initiative aims to recruit a minimum of 2,100 patients with chronic conditions by June 2021.

The QUEST Initiative will collect and analyse information on patient mobility, functionality, chronic pain or discomfort, anxiety and depression, medication requirements and ongoing health costs.

According to the university, the study has the potential to extend internationally.

“What makes our study unique is the comprehensive suite of patient-reported outcomes – or PROs – being assessed in patients prescribed medicinal cannabis,” said Lead Associate Professor Claudia Rutherford.

“Medicinal cannabis has been studied in a broad range of chronic conditions and diseases but quality-of-life studies are limited. The QUEST study is unique in its approach, emphasising both health economic and quality of life measures, rather than effectiveness for a specific symptom or medical condition.”

The medical cannabis study seeks to analyse changes in patient conditions and symptoms using self-reported quality-of-life outcomes resulting from the use of medicinal cannabis products.

Studies into the safety and efficacy of Cannabidiol CBD in comparison to other prescription medicines are expanding around the world with research finding the potential side effects and effects of cannabis less harmful than other medicines.