Navigation Links
Herbal cannabis not recommended for rheumatology patients
Date:3/2/2014

Patients with rheumatic conditions are in need of symptom relief and some are turning to herbal cannabis as a treatment option. However, the effectiveness and safety of medical marijuana to treat symptoms of rheumatic conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, or fibromyalgia is not supported by medical evidence. A new article published in Arthritis Care & Research, a journal of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), explores the risks associated with using herbal cannabis for medicinal purposes and advises healthcare providers to discourage rheumatology patients from using this drug as therapy.

The reason for the medical interest in herbal cannabis is that the human body has an extensive cannabinoid system comprising molecules and receptors that have effects on many functions including pain modulation. Medical cannabis is commonly used to self-treat severe pain associated with arthritis and musculoskeletal pain. In fact, previous research reports that 80% of marijuana users in a U.S. pain clinic are treating myofascial pain with the drug. In population studies in the U.K. and Australia, up to 33% of individuals report using marijuana to treat arthritis pain. As of June 2013, estimates from the office of Information Commissioner of Canada list "severe arthritis" as the reason the 65% of Canadians who are allowed to possess marijuana for medicinal purposes.

"With the public outcry for herbal cannabis therapy, governments around the world are considering its legalization for medicinal use," explains lead investigator Dr. Mary-Ann Fitzcharles, a researcher and rheumatologist at the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) and the Research Institute of the MUHC in Quebec, Canada. "Physicians caring for patients who are self-medicating with marijuana need to understand the health implications of using this drug. Our study aims to provide health care professionals with that medical evidence related to medical marijuana use in patients with rheumatic conditions."

In the U.S. twenty states, including the District of Columbia (DC), have legalized cannabis for medical purposes. The present study examines the dosing, administration, efficacy and risks of herbal cannabis in pain management for patients with rheumatic conditions. The health issues with recreational marijuana use in this patient population are not covered.

Concentrations of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)the substance found in Cannabis sativa that provides pain relief and alters brain function (psychoactive effect)vary in the plant material by up to 33% and absorption rates are between 2% and 56%, making the dosing of herbal cannabis unreliable. While cannabis may be ingested, most users prefer to inhale the compound for a quicker response. However, smoking a "joint" is not recommended by the medical community due to adverse effects on the respiratory system from hydrocarbons, tar and carbon monoxide.

Furthermore, there is no formal short-term or long-term study of the effectiveness of herbal cannabis in patients with rheumatic diseases. Studies that show good efficacy of cannabinoids for cancer and neuropathic pain may not be extended to rheumatic diseases because of the differing mechanism in the types of pain.

The study authors highlight that use of medical marijuana comes with inherent risks such as compromised cognitive and psychomotor function. Long-term use of cannabis may lead to mental illness, dependence, addiction and memory issues. In fact, a prior U.S. study of 8,000 adults who used cannabis in the previous year found that the odds of depression were 1.4 times higher in cannabis users compared to non-users.

"At this time, we cannot recommend herbal cannabis for arthritis pain management given the lack of efficacy data, potential harm from the drug, and availability of other therapies for managing pain," concludes Dr. Fitzcharles. "Physicians should discourage rheumatology patients from using medical marijuana as a therapy."


'/>"/>
Contact: Dawn Peters
sciencenewsroom@wiley.com
781-388-8408
Wiley
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Herbal Remedy Ingredient Tied to Cancer, Kidney Failure
2. Efficacy of herbal remedies for managing insomnia
3. Herbal remedy used to treat hepatitis C proves ineffective, Penn study finds
4. Can herbal products provide sun protection?
5. Young researcher on the trail of herbal snakebite antidote
6. Bioforce USA Announces Herbatint Herbal Hair Color Selected For Tips and Trends Again
7. Herbalist.com Launches Largest Natural Health Database Connecting Local Businesses with Local Consumers
8. SpiritDetox.com Announces Addition of Herbal Clay Teas to Detox Product Lineup
9. Chinese Herbal Medicine Can Reach into Prostate Gland and Treat Prostatitis Successfully As A New Option for Prostatitis Sufferers, States Wuhan Dr.Li's Clinic
10. The Center for Anti-Aging Will Now Be Offering Its Vitamins and Herbal Supplements on Amazon
11. A Earthy Addition; Natural Health Store Herbal Path in Dover, NH now Carries Unique Native Remedy Kanwa Whole Body Detox Products for Daily Purification.
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/18/2017)... ... February 18, 2017 , ... ProParagraph Fashion Volume ... Studios ’ ProParagraph Fashion Volume 2 for all multi-line FCPX project needs. ... can pick and choose from hand-crafted trend-setting designs with smooth animations that will ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... TN (PRWEB) , ... February 17, 2017 , ... ... mobility has not kept pace. Enovate Medical has introduced an innovative workstation designed ... years of supporting nurses, the Encore Mobile EHR Workstation offers a lightweight, highly ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... , ... February 17, 2017 , ... ... brings its educational assistance management solution to the exhibit floor for the ... Orlando, Fla. , From Feb. 19–23, 2017, more than 40,000 healthcare industry ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... ... February 17, 2017 , ... Corrective ... Warning Letter, **An FDAnews Webinar**, Feb. 23, 2017 — 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 ... corrective action (CA) and preventive action (PA)? , The methods share techniques and ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... ... February 17, 2017 , ... ... season , Trinity Health and the U.S. Soccer Foundation announced today that they ... underserved communities. Soccer for Success, the Foundation’s soccer mentoring program, teaches kids the ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/17/2017)... Theravance Biopharma, Inc. (NASDAQ: ... announced the presentation of positive clinical data for ... kinase (JAK) inhibitor designed to be intestinally restricted, ... European Crohn,s and Colitis Organization (ECCO). In a ... its completed Phase 1 study of single-ascending and ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... , Feb. 17, 2017   Risperdal lawsuits ... effects allegedly associated with use of the atypical antipsychotic ... Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, where the ... tort program. According to a notice posted on the ... convene a meeting on March 9, 2017 at 11:00 ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... , Feb. 17, 2017  BioDigital, Inc., ... the partnership of their 3D body mapping technology ... IT.  The new integration will be used to ... interactive model of the human body. BioDigital pilots ... clinicians time, while also increasing the precision of ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: