Davis, M.P. (2008). Oral nabilone capsules in the treatment of chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting and pain. Expert Opinion on Investigational Drugs, 17(1), 85-95.doi: 10.1517/135437188.8.131.52
This was a review of published English literature, including reviews, meta-analysis, and treatment trials from 1975–1997 on using cannabinoids to control or prevent chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (CINV), with very few trials found after 1997. From this review, 30 randomized control trials were found that looked at cannabinoids to control or prevent CINV. Overall, the trials received low scores for adequacy of randomization, blinding design, and description of withdrawal. Three cannabinoids were studied: nabilone (16), dronabinol (13), and levonantradol (1). The medications were compared to prochloperazine (12), placebo (10), metochlorpramide (4), chlorpromazine (2), domperidone (2), alizapride (1), thiethylperazine (1), and haloperidol (1). Twelve studies involved various scoring systems. No clear separation existed between acute and delayed CINV.
The trials included 1,760 patients, with 394 excluded.
Cannabinoids, like nabilone, may have a role in reducing delayed or refractory CINV, but more evidence is needed.