Photographer: David Ryder/Bloomberg

How Smart Weed Could Make Pot the Go-To Painkiller

Making it easier to calibrate the correct dose of medical marijuana may prompt more physicians to prescribe it as an alternative to painkillers such as opioids, according to one Canadian company.

Toronto-based Resolve Digital Health has developed a smart inhaler into which patients insert a pre-measured, single-use cannabis pod filled with dried bud or oil. They then use a mobile application to measure the effectiveness of each treatment, monitor their symptoms and track their consumption, so that dosage levels and marijuana strains can be adjusted as required, Chief Executive Officer Rob Adelson said.

“More and more doctors are getting involved and trying it,” Adelson said by phone. “The medical market is huge.”

Demand for medical cannabis is growing in various countries including in Canada, which plans legalization next year, and where the market could be worth C$1.8 billion ($1.4 billion) by 2021, according to Canaccord Genuity Group Inc. Resolve has struck an agreement with Canadian grower Aphria Inc. and Liberty Health Sciences Inc. to introduce smart weed products to as many as 15,000 patients in Canada and the U.S. in 2018, Adelson said.

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