Painful muscle stiffness, which affects the vast majority of people with multiple sclerosis, is eased with progressively stronger doses of cannabis extract (tetrahydrocannabinol), according to Phase III trial results published in the Journal of Neurology Neurosurgery and Psychiatry.
Painful muscle stiffness can seriously affect an MS (multiple sclerosis) patients’ ability to go about their daily routine activities; sleep quality may be affected and their mobility is reduced. Experts say that approximately 90% of MS patients experience painful muscle stiffness, with the pain causing considerable distress.
Unfortunately, treatments available today, some of which may be limited by toxicity, do not satisfactorily resolve the muscle stiffness symptoms. Consequently, a growing number of MS patients have tried out alternative remedies and therapies, including cannabis.
The investigators wrote: “It has been estimated that between 1% and 4% of the total UK MS population is using cannabis for symptom relief.”
Several studies have been conducted using tetrahydrocannabinol. In June 2012, A study aimed at determining whether the cannabis extract might slow down the course of progressive MS showed that there was no evidence to suggest this.
The Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) published a study in May 2012 which showed that smoking marijuana helps alleviate pain and muscle tightness in patients with MS.
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