Study Finds Cannabis Suitable Treatment Option for Fibromyalgia

June 20, 2019

Researchers in Israel found that medical cannabis therapy helped reduce pain and improve quality of life for most fibromyalgia patients.

Somewhere between three and six million people in the United States suffer from fibromyalgia, a chronic pain syndrome that doctors scarcely understand and struggle to effectively treat. But for years, many fibromyalgia patients have shared their stories and experiences treating their symptoms with cannabis.

Yet while patients frequently self-report using cannabis to manage their fibromyalgia, there are only a few clinical studies that have assessed whether cannabis can be an effective treatment for the disease. The studies that do exist, however, all present positive results. And a new investigation into the characteristics, safety and effectiveness of medical cannabis therapy for fibromyalgia just added more evidence to the pile. According to the authors of that study, a team of medical researchers in Israel, cannabis may be a suitable treatment option for fibromyalgia.

Marijuana Helped Reduce Pain for 81 Percent of Fibromyalgia Patients

“Safety and Efficacy of Medical Cannabis in Fibromyalgia,” a study published this month in the Journal of Clinical Medicine, assessed 367 fibromyalgia patients’ use of cannabis over a six-month period. Of those patients, 301 were women, and at the end of the six-month assessment period, 261 patients participated in a survey. (Some patients stopped their medical cannabis treatments.) That survey aimed to gather data about how well cannabis managed pain symptoms associated with fibromyalgia. It also asked patients about any side effects associated with their medical cannabis treatments.

The results reveal just how effective cannabis can be as a treatment option for fibromyalgia. According to the study, patients began the six-month trial with a baseline pain intensity of 9.0 on a scale of zero to 10. At the end of the six-month assessment period, median pain intensity reduced to 5.0. Furthermore, 194 patients (81.1 percent) experienced at least some improvement in their condition without any serious side effects.

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