The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    Treating spasticity in MS with THC and CBD extracts

    Researchers from the Global Neuroscience Initiative Foundation, in Los Angeles, California reviewed the effectiveness of combined delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) extracts on spasticity in multiple sclerosis (MS).

    First, the details.

    • 6 studies were reviewed for treatment dosage and duration, objective and subjective measures of spasticity, and reports of adverse events.

    And, the results.

    • Although there was variation, a trend of reduced spasticity in treated patients was noted.
    • Side effects were reported; however combined THC and CBD extracts were well-tolerated.

    The bottom line?

    The authors tell us, “Although several past reviews have suggested that cannabinoid therapy provides a therapeutic benefit for symptoms of MS, none have presented a methodical investigation of newer cannabinoid treatments in MS-related spasticity.”

    They concluded that some objective measures of spasticity showed trends toward improvement. However, there were no significant changes after treatment.

    Subjective assessments of symptom relief make up most of the reported evidence for improved spasticity with THC and CBD.

    Regarding street cannabis, others have reported neutral outcomes in MS patients, including…

    • 50% slower on tests of information processing speed compared to non-smoking MS patients
    • Marijuana smokers are more likely to be depressed and anxious.

    1/7/10 21:52 JR

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