What Side Effects And Symptoms Of Peripheral Neuropathy Can Medical Marijuana Treat
Marijuana for peripheral neuropathy, despite low active cannabinoid concentrations, reduced chronic pain linked to peripheral neuropathy in participants of another study. It also eased their acute pain. The pain relief the medical cannabis provided during the study was equivalent to or even better than the pain relief other drugs like tricyclic antidepressants, anticonvulsants and other medications evaluated for peripheral neuropathy provided.
Chronic pain from neuropathy can lasts for weeks or even years, and is persistent. Its usually caused by nerve damage and may leave patients feeling hopeless.
This pain may get so overwhelming it eventually causes depression in patients. Patients often turn to strong prescription medications like Oxycodone and Vicodin just for the smallest bit of relief possible to get through the day.
For many years, these strong chemical medications were the only options patients had to treat their chronic pain and often led to dependence. However, cannabis is now becoming more widespread, and both patients and researchers are finding it just may be an excellent alternative to these harsh, potentially addictive medications.
Cannabis and peripheral neuropathy treatment can help with peripheral neuropathy symptoms such as:
- Sharp, shooting, burning or stabbing pain
- Muscle twitching or cramping
- Difficulty sleeping due to foot and leg pain
- Anxiety and depression
What Do You Think
Is marijuana use worth the risks involved? Leave a comment and share your thoughts.
Dont let your addiction reach rock bottom. If you or someone you love is struggling with the devastating side effects of addiction and are unsure of where to turn, call us today at . Greenhouse Treatment Center, American Addiction Centers drug rehab center in Fort Worth, TX, is ready to help you get the treatment you need today.
Safety And Study Duration
The safety and potential long-term effects of cannabis products in PwMS have not been sufficiently evaluated. All of the MS studies so far were short term, ranging from 6 to 15 weeks. Long-term risks and rare, but severe, side effects cannot be captured in these short-duration trials. Another noteworthy observation is that there is no standardized way to compare the adverse effect profiles between the various cannabis formulations . In addition, it is difficult to assess whether certain adverse effects are dose dependent, which highlights another critical issue for future study.
THC levels and the THC : CBD ratio in cannabis have risen considerably in the USA and Europe in the last 2 decades, which may increase the potential harms from repeated use . It is well established that cannabis, especially products with high THC content, negatively impairs cognition and executive function in healthy adults and may increase the risk of schizophrenic-like psychosis or other severe mental illnesses . This has significant implications for PwMS using medicinal cannabis because PwMS are already more likely to experience impaired cognition and executive dysfunction. Thus, the psychological effects of chronic cannabis use may further increase the risk of impairment in PwMS and lead to psychosis or severe mental illness. Currently, it is unknown how chronic cannabis use, of any THC : CBD ratio, impacts cognition and executive function in PwMS.
Don’t Miss: Can You Die From Cutting Your Wrists
What Symptoms Of Neuropathy Does Cannabis Treat
The existing research suggests that cannabis may help to address a variety of common neuropathy symptoms, including:
- Chronic pain and discomfort
Some of these symptoms were specifically addressed in the aforementioned clinical review, but other symptoms have been addressed in separate studies. For example, we know that cannabis may prevent excess sweating because studies have shown it to have a strong anticholinergic effect, and numerous other studies have uncovered potential anti-inflammatory effects.
Research Into Cannabis For Nerve Pain
While a lot more research is still needed to fully understand how cannabis can help treat nerve pain, what we know so far looks promising. A 2013 study published in The Journal of Pain found that cannabis produced significant pain reduction in people with neuropathic pain. A following study in the same publication looked into nerve pain associated with HIV and found at least a 30% reduction in pain compared to those taking a placebo.
So how does cannabis work to relieve neuropathic pain? The answer lies in the way it interacts with our endocannabinoid system.
Recommended Reading: Is Lidocaine A Narcotic Drug
How Is Medical Marijuana An Effective Treatment For Back Pain
Medical cannabis can be an alternative to traditional treatments. It is becoming an increasingly preferred treatment for patients with chronic back pain. For example, conventional medications can cause a multitude of side effects like nausea, stomach upset, ulcers and gastric bleeding. Medical marijuana does not have the same associated side effects. Here are some ways with medical marijuana can help treat back pain:
It may reduce your pain to a level where you can live an active life
It may allow you to be free from potentially dangerous and addictive medications, while having an overall better quality of life.
Chronic back pain can cause depression, insomnia and anxiety. Medical marijuana can eliminate or reduce many of these symptoms.
It is natural substance from plant, without chemicals,.
During a study conducted at the University of Colorado, they looked at 200 patients with back pain. The pain was due to conditions focused on degenerative changes. 89% of patients said medical marijuana reduced their pain moderately. 81% claimed that it worked better than narcotic medications. The consumption of medical marijuana by the patients was once or twice a day.
What Is Back Pain
Back pain is a problem that many people are all-too-familiar with. It can range from a constant, dull ache to a sharp, sudden pain that incapacitates you. A fall, an accident or improperly lifting heavy objects can bring on back pain suddenly, or you can develop it gradually as your spine changes with your age.
Structural problems can cause back pain including:
- Abnormal spine curvature
No matter how your back pain came about, you know how it feels and how it can affect daily living. Back pain is among the common reasons people seek medical care or self-treat.
Also Check: Tramadol For Sciatica
Heres Where Medical Marijuana Gets Complicated
Much of the research into medical marijuana has been preliminary to date but the predominant pathway for the medicinal effects of marijuana seem to be its interaction with the bodys endocannabinoid system. The system is also named for the plants naturally occurring cannabinoids, the two core ones being: cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol .
To further explain, this system modulates your bodys desire to stay balanced and stable, known as homeostasis, and plays an important role in neuronal and immune cell function, both of which are important parts of pain perception. There are three parts of the endocannabinoid system:
cannabinoid receptors, namely CB1 and CB2
enzymes that facilitate the breakdown and use of cannabinoids
Cannabinoid receptors are located throughout your body and help determine how cannabinoids affect you.
CB1 receptors are found predominantly in your central nervous system and affect a persons pain experience. CB1 receptors also play a role in the signaling of pain to the brain via the spinal cord. On a physiological level, CB1 receptors can affect your emotions, memory, executive functioning, and reward. CB1 is the receptor predominantly responsible for the psychotropic effects of cannabis.
Can Cannabis Help With Nerve Pain
Cannabis-based treatments might be the new norm for neuropathic pain.
Nerve pain is one of the most difficult conditions to treat.
Most prescription medications and topical treatments dont seem to fully relieve patients of pain, inflammation, and other neuropathic symptoms.
With the rise of cannabis legalization, even medical cannabis legalization, researchers suggest that cannabis-based treatments could be an effective alternative to over-the-counter and prescribed neuropathy medications.
Recommended Reading: Blueberries And Stomach Pain
What Is The Appropriate Medical Marijuana Dosage For Neuropathy
There are currently no widely accepted dosage recommendations when it comes to medical marijuana for neuropathy. A persons tolerance can vary tremendously based on their gender, size, body fat content, and history with cannabis usage. You also need to be mindful of the cannabinoid profile.
In general, professionals recommend starting with a low dosage and increasing gradually as needed. For example, one study found 25 mg of cannabis with 9.4% THC to be effective for neuropathic pain when smoked three times a day over the course of five days. Your own experience may vary, so start small and adjust as needed.
Understanding The Different Types Of Neuropathy
- Peripheral neuropathy is nerve damage that affects the nerves leading to the feet, legs, hands, and arms. It is the most common form of this condition and is caused by diabetes . Subtypes include:
- Autonomic neuropathy affects the autonomic nerves, or the nerves that keep your body functioning properly . When these nerves are affected, your body may have issues maintaining its proper body temperature, also known as homeostasis. It can also cause issues with your digestive tract and other bodily functionality.
- Motor neuropathy affects the portion of the nerves that control muscle movements and may cause issues with walking, grasping things, or talking .
- Sensory neuropathy affects the sensory portion of the nerves that are responsible for feeling touch, temperature, or the pain from a cut .
You May Like: How To Kill Yourself By Slitting Your Wrists
Cannabis May Relieve Chronic Nerve Pain
Smoking cannabis from a pipe can significantly reduce chronic pain in patients with damaged nerves, a study suggests.
A small study of 23 people also showed improvements with sleep and anxiety.
Writing in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, the researchers said larger studies using inhaler-type devices for cannabis were needed.
UK experts said the pain relief seen was small but potentially important, and more investigation was warranted.
Around 1 to 2% of people have chronic neuropathic pain – pain due to problems with signalling between nerves – but effective treatments are lacking.
Some patients with this type of chronic pain say smoking cannabis helps with their symptoms.
And researchers have been investigating whether taking cannabinoids – the chemicals within cannabis that effect pain – in pill form could have the same effect.
But the team from McGill University in Montreal said clinical trials on smoked cannabis were lacking.
Cannabis Does Not Reduce Pain It Makes It More Bearable
Using cannabis for pain relief does help, however, it makes pain more bearable rather than getting rid of it, researchers from Oxford Universitys Centre for Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the Brain reported in the journal Pain.
The authors added that people in pain act differently to cannabis, according to their brain imaging study.
The principal psychoactive constituent of cannabis is called tetrahydrocannabinol . The researchers found that when volunteers took oral tablets of THC, they tended to find the experience of pain more tolerable. There was no evidence that THC reduced pain intensity.
Researchers from the Mayo Clinic, however, said medical marijuana is not recommended for teenagers with chronic pain.
THC is one of 400 compounds found in the Cannabis plant
According to MRI brain imaging scans in this latest study, areas of the brain that interpret pain were not affected significantly when people took THC. It appears that cannabis affects peoples emotional state in a way that makes pain less awful.
Lead researcher, Dr Michael Lee, said:
Health care professionals and administrators say that chronic pain is a complex healthcare problem. In order to help patients effectively manage their pain, different approaches are needed, which can include physical therapy, psychological support, and medications.
Dr. Lee and team carried out several MRI scans on 12 participants at the FMRIB center in Oxford, England.
The volunteers were divided into two groups:
Also Check: How To Slit Your Wrist To Die
How Does Marijuana Improve Neuropathic Pain
Cannabis sativa contains more than 100 different chemical compounds, known as cannabinoids, which have different effects on the body. Tetrahydrocannabinol is the main psychoactive cannabinoid associated with getting high. Cannabidiol is the main non-psychoactive cannabinoid, commonly associated with therapeutic benefits. Cannabinoids exert their effects by interacting with receptors through the endocannabinoid system.
To understand how cannabinoids can improve neuropathic pain, lets take a look at the peripheral nervous system. The peripheral nervous system is made up of nerves, which serve as information channels that allow the brain and spinal cord to communicate with tissues and organs throughout the body. Within each nerve are interconnecting neurons, or nerve cells. Each neuron consists of three main parts: dendrites, an axon, and a cell body. Dendrites are responsible for detecting sensations felt by receptors in our tissues and organs, which are then transferred along the axon toward the spinal cord and brain.
When a nerve is damaged, altered gene activity within individual nerve cells can become over-sensitive or hyper-reactive. This process is known as sensitization, and it occurs as a result of ongoing pain receptor input, which persists after tissue damage has healed. This ongoing pain receptor input is created by cellular activities, including increased availability of excitatory neurotransmitters and a greater number of excitable pain receptors.
How Pot Works On Pain
There are cannabinoid receptors on inflammatory cells as well as throughout the nervous systemnerves, spinal cord and brain, Dr. Wallace explains. When these receptors are stimulated, the result is pain relief and a decrease in inflammation.
This was the first study of its kind to also look at the cognitive effects of cannabis, and Wallace and team were pleased to find the effects minimal.
These findings are especially important, Dr. Wallace notes, because neuropathic pain is widespread, affecting up to one-half of people with diabetes, according to National Institutes of Health data, and few good medications exist to help manage it. Diabetic peripheral neuropathy is one of the most common neuropathic pain syndromes in our society, he explains, exceeded only by low back pain. There are very few treatment options and most of the medications available have dose-limiting side effects.
Dr. Wallace and team see inhaled cannabis as a viable option for controlling neuropathic pain. Medicinal marijuana has been legal in California since 1996, and we have learned a lot during this time, he says. I frequently recommend medicinal marijuana to treat a variety of painful conditions.
And what about the “high” factor? It may limit clinical use, Dr. Wallace admits. However, there is component of marijuana called cannabidiol that doesnt seem to make people high. Dr. Wallace is optimistic about its future use for pain control.
Recommended Reading: Lidocaine Patch 4% Otc
How To Get And Use Medical Marijuana For Pain And Related Symptoms
Step 1: Get a Doctors Order
The first step in consuming medical marijuana will be getting a recommendation from your doctor. Because marijuana is still illegal at the federal level, doctors give recommendations or orders but are not legally permitted to give prescriptions. You can find state-by-state information regarding what conditions qualify for medical marijuana.
Step 2: Pick Your Passion
Next, youll need to decide what form you want to use each type will dictate your experience with it.¹ Consumption methods can change the percentage of active compounds your body absorbs, the time it takes to feel the effects of marijuana, and the duration of those effects. There are three main ways to consume cannabis:
inhalation vaping with a vaporizer or smoking
edibles gummies, brownies, and other snacks tinctures and oils that dissolve under the tongue fall into this category too
topicals creams, ointments, salves applied directly to your skin
Below is a quick overview of each.
Cbd & Neuropathic Pain
Research surrounding CBD and neuropathic pain are limited.
However, based on the research we know about CBD, we can guess that it would also help reduce chronic neuropathic pain.
Our bodies make chemicals called endocannabinoids that bind to our brains cannabinoid receptors like CB1 and CB2. These endocannabinoids are responsible for controlling many key bodily functions like
- Immune system response
Also Check: Lidoderm Patch Neck Pain
How Hoes Medical Cannabis Help Nerve Pain
The endocannabinoid system aids in regulating the nervous system and also in reducing pain. When someone undergoes a nerve injury, neuropathic pain and chronic pain may often follow. Cannabinoids such as THC and CBD reduce nerve pain by activating receptors and helping to regulate the central nervous system.
Cannabis also affects the endorphin system, which may make pain feel less intense and more manageable. CBD and THC have been found to be effective at knocking out pain, but research shows that other cannabinoids may also provide chronic pain relief.
Breaking Down Cannabis And Chronic Back Pain
Chronic back pain can be one of the most debilitating conditions an individual can encounter there are very few daily activities that do not involve some kind of movement or even bracing of your back.
Living with Chronic Back Pain can leave you feeling frustrated, incapable, and at times, downright depressed.
The situation can look particularly bleak if you are unable to find any relief for your pain from more traditional medicines and techniques.
Fortunately, there may be another solution your doctor might have missed out on telling you about that may help with your chronic back pain. Cannabis and back pain relief are being strongly linked and the findings look promising.
This article will give you all of the relevant information you might need to know about medical cannabis and back pain to help you make an informed choice about trying it for yourself.
Also Check: Are Blueberries Good For Gastritis