The Uses Of Medical Marijuana In Treating Pain

2012-11-23 | |
Last updated: 2015-01-09

How Can Marijuana Help Manage Pain?

Regardless of how the chemicals from marijuana get into the body, they offer some medical benefits in treating certain conditions. The following are some of the medical benefits that have been identified by the limited research that has taken place so far.

Managing Multiple Sclerosis Pain With Medical Marijuana

One of the most well known uses of medical marijuana that has received considerable media attention is in the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis pain. Individuals with the disease will often face painful, spastic muscle movement as well as muscle tightness that can also cause pain. As is the case with other types of pain, MS patients experiencing these symptoms will have difficulty going about their daily activities and getting quality sleep. There is an overall reduction in quality of life.

Having observed health benefits among MS patients who smoke marijuana, researchers from the University of California, San Diego conducted studies to measure marijuana effectiveness. Their 2012 research found that smoking marijuana reduced muscle spasms by a third in comparison to patients that did not use the drug. Although other drugs are available to reduce spasms, their side effects are often poorly tolerated or less effective. In comparison, the only side effect of the marijuana use was the well-known, short term high that is accompanied by a temporary reduction in mental abilities.

Another benefit that marijuana use offers to Multiple Sclerosis patients was also confirmed in 2012. Researchers From the University of Plymouth who used only the THC extract investigated its effects on muscle stiffness. The researchers discovered that use of THC, in pill form, provided considerable relief from muscle stiffness to approximately 1 in 3 of the nearly 150 patients involved in the study. Given that 90% of those with Multiple Sclerosis experience muscle stiffness, even a one third success rate could help many patients.

Marijuana Use In Treating Fibromyalgia Pain

Considering the benefits that marijuana offers to MS patients in treating pain, it is not surprising that the drug can also treat the pain associated with other conditions. Research carried out at the University of Manitoba in 2008 studied the effects of synthetically created THC on fibromyalgia pain. What the researchers observed was a reduction in the anxiety associated with the disease as well as a significant reduction in the levels of pain experienced. Overall patients on the THC were more able to cope with their illness.

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Category: Healthcare Politics, Medical Research, Medical Treatment

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