Could Cannabis Be Recommended to Manage Endometriosis?

Could Cannabis Be Recommended to Manage Endometriosis?

There is currently not enough evidence to support the use of cannabis to manage endometriosis and chronic pelvic pain.

Key Points


  • There is currently not enough evidence supporting the benefits of cannabis-based products in managing endometriosis.


  • U.K. National guidance currently advice the use of cannabis-based products only for conditions with a clear published evidence of benefit in the case all other treatment options are exhausted.
  • Based on this, the use of cannabis-based products for endometriosis should not be recommended.

What's done here:

  • Researchers conducted a literature review of studies on the potential benefits of cannabis-based products in endometriosis.
  • After excluding the conditions unrelated to endometriosis or therapies unrelated to cannabis-based products, 41 article selected among 264 articles.

Key results:

  • Most studies were in models of endometriosis and even though some showed evidence of benefit, results are conflicting.
  • Only a few survey studies analyzing the effect of cannabis-based products affected by bias. 


  • More research is needed to better understand the effect of cannabinoids in endometriosis before they can be recommended or prescribed to manage the condition.

Lay Summary

It is not possible to recommend cannabis-based products to patients with endometriosis because there is not enough evidence supporting their benefits, according to a new study published in the Journal of Minimally Invasive Gynecology.

Cannabis-based products have been suggested as a therapeutic option for patients with endometriosis. They could overcome the disadvantages of current treatments such as infertility and other side effects, it was proposed.

In order to understand the effects of cannabis-based products on women’s reproductive system and establish whether they can be beneficial in patients with endometriosis, a team of researchers led by Ed Prosser-Snelling BA, BMBS, conducted a literature review on the subject.

The team identified 264 articles and included 41 in their analysis. Some of the studies showed evidence of cannabis-based products having a benefit but results were conflicting.

Only a few studies looked at the effect of cannabis-based products in patients with endometriosis. The majority of these were based on surveys and included bias. 

According to UK national guidelines, cannabis-based products “can only be prescribed for conditions where there is clear published evidence of benefit and only when all other treatment options have been exhausted”. Based on this, national guidance cannot recommend cannabis-based products for endometriosis patients in the UK. 

Moreover, the use of cannabis could potentially harm a person’s health in the long term and lead to cannabis use disorder, psychosis, and mood disturbances.

Research Source:

cannabis pelvic pain literature review guideline recommendations


EndoNews highlights the latest peer-reviewed scientific research and medical literature that focuses on endometriosis. We are unbiased in our summaries of recently-published endometriosis research. EndoNews does not provide medical advice or opinions on the best form of treatment. We highly stress the importance of not using EndoNews as a substitute for seeking an experienced physician.