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Study: Cannabis Extracts Mitigate Muscle Stiffness In Multiple Sclerosis Patients

  • by Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director July 24, 2012

    [Editor’s note: This post is excerpted from this week’s forthcoming NORML weekly media advisory. To have NORML’s news alerts and legislative advisories delivered straight to your in-box, sign up here.]

    The oral administration of cannabis extracts significantly reduces muscle stiffness in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), according to just published clinical trial data published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry.

    Investigators at the University of Plymouth, Clinical Neurology Research Group, in the United Kingdom assessed the use of cannabinoids versus placebo in 279 subjects with MS over a twelve-week period. Cannabis extracts in the study contained standardized doses of THC and cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive constituent in cannabis, contained in a soft, gelatin capsule.

    Investigators reported that oral cannabis extracts were “superior” over placebo in the treatment of MS-associated muscle stiffness and pain.

    Authors concluded: “Treatment with standardized oral extract of cannabis sativa relieved muscle stiffness. The proportion of participants experiencing relief was almost twice as large in the cannabis extract group as in the placebo group. … Effective pain relief is also achieved by cannabis extracts, especially in patients with a high baseline pain score. Our findings suggest that standardized cannabis extracts can be clinically useful in treating the highly complex phenomenon of spasticity in MS.”

    In May, clinical trial data published in the Journal of the Canadian Medical Association reported that cannabis inhalation significantly mitigates spasticity and pain in patients with treatment-resistant multiple sclerosis.

    Separate clinical trials assessing the administration of oral cannabis extracts on patients with MS have indicated that cannabinoids can alleviate symptoms of the disease long-term and may also act in ways to mitigate MS progression. Sativex, an oral spray containing plant cannabis extracts, is presently legal by prescription to treat MS-related symptoms in over a dozen countries, including Canada, Germany, Great Britain, New Zealand, and Spain. Nonetheless, the National MS Society of the United States shares little enthusiasm for cannabis as a potential treatment for multiple sclerosis, stating, “Studies completed thus far have not provided convincing evidence that marijuana or its derivatives provide substantiated benefits for symptoms of MS.”

    Full text of the study, “Multiple Sclerosis and Extract of Cannabis: results of the MUSEC trial,” appears in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry.

    37 Responses to “Study: Cannabis Extracts Mitigate Muscle Stiffness In Multiple Sclerosis Patients”

    1. Greg says:

      …but studies completed thus far HAVE provided convincing evidence that marijuana or its derivatives MAY provide substantiated benefits for symptoms of MS. Seems like it would at least be worth looking into…

    2. Don says:

      “Quote”
      ” the National MS Society of the United States shares little enthusiasm for cannabis as a potential treatment for multiple sclerosis, stating, “Studies completed thus far have not provided convincing evidence that marijuana or its derivatives provide substantiated benefits for symptoms of MS.”
      I Know WHY!,
      #1. The U.S. Gvt only allows research in an attempt to prove “Dangers” NOT “Uses” and ANY Research done, Is done “Illegally” according to the D.E.A. Thus ultimately “Unreliable” as it was done by “Activists” That is how they try to dismiss the results.
      #2.The Pharmaceutical Companies cannot have an “Exclusive” Market called a “Monopoly” because people can cheaply grow their own, If it`s Legal – Who is going to stop them? AND the Government Itself has a Patent!
      U.S. Patent # 6630507 (Memorize It!)
      In 2003, the U.S. Government as represented by the Department of Health and Human Services filed for, and was awarded a patent on cannabinoids as antioxidants and neuroprotectants.
      Looks Obvious to me that they CONFIRMED Medical Use in 2003!
      It`s ALL about “Money” AND “Power” now, The people have spoken, The Medical Evidence IS there and they are STILL NOT listening!
      Time to replace some MORE Legislators this fall.

    3. […] Study: Cannabis Extracts Mitigate Muscle Stiffness In Multiple Sclerosis Patients [Editor's note: This post is excerpted from this week's forthcoming NORML weekly media advisory. To have NORML's news alerts and legislative advisories delivered straight to your in-box, sign up here.] The oral administration of cannabis extracts significantly reduces muscle stiffness in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), according to just published clinical trial data published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry. Investigators at the University of Plymouth, Clinical Neurology Research Group, in the United Kingdom assessed the use of cannabinoids versus placebo in 279 subjects with MS over a […] […]

    4. While studying the harms of drugs, I came across this finding. If you’re interested in researching more effects, please watch my video: http://youtu.be/6io3Ajn_3Jc @youtube and let me know what you think.

      Jennifer

    5. Dave says:

      Don,
      No offense, but you know nothing about the issuance of patents… while, conceptually, the argument is compelling, once you learn the process of patent application review and understand how the law dictates patent application approval, your argument would hold no water…

    6. St. Nick says:

      Alcohol is the worst drug we have. Not only is it addicting and deadly but it numbs the user to life. Tobacco’s not that great and not that much less damaging. Cannabis is’nt even damaging at all. It actually improves things holistically and medically. Plus the GOOD feelings we feel that we call being high are desirable- is feeling good such a crime, really?

    7. Galileo Galilei says:

      The cruel delay of research into the use of our noble weed against multiple sclerosis and the agony of chemotherapy may be the most monstrous sin against humanity to occur in my lifetime.

    8. Ohio I am says:

      The sativex train is coming!
      And the US has been falling behind
      In all education compared with other countries, so I’m not surprised with the idiotic MS society findings.

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