Opiods Not OK

In my current work with Business’s there is increasing discussion around opioid use and safety sensitive workplaces strategy to this issue. I am firmly of the belief that Opioids present a threat to safety not to be dispelled with trust that because it’s so freely available over the counter and prescribed it must be OK. This has led me to this interesting article from the Lancet I would like to share. Opioid use can be impairing and long term use can and does lead to tolerance and more. This Drug class is an important drug class related to potential impairment of a person’s ability to be safe at work and the following study may share some insights into not only the effects of Opioids but also its interaction with another common impairing substance Cannabis. Cannabis is well recognised as a depressant but this article sheds more light on its effects with Opioids.  The following article was written for a study on use of cannabis and opioids for non-cancer chronic pain. Workers with Chronic pain require sensitive support and a strategy to help them manage pain without impacting their safety and the safety of others.


“When people taking opioids for chronic pain become tolerant to the drugs and develop opioid-induced hyperplasia, they often will turn to cannabis for what they think is added pain treatment, but we found there were no reductions in pain,” lead author Andrew H. Rogers, PhD, from the University of Houston’s Department of Psychology in Texas, told Medscape Medical News.

The findings were presented here at the American Pain Society (APS) Annual Meeting 2019.




Interest in the use of cannabis and cannabinoids to treat chronic non-cancer pain is increasing, because of their potential to reduce opioid dose requirements. We aimed to investigate cannabis use in people living with chronic non-cancer pain who had been prescribed opioids, including their reasons for use and perceived effectiveness of cannabis; associations between amount of cannabis use and pain, mental health, and opioid use; the effect of cannabis use on pain severity and interference over time; and potential opioid-sparing effects of cannabis.. read more 

Effect of cannabis use in people with chronic non-cancer pain prescribed opioids: findings from a 4-year prospective cohort study