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Does Marijuana Help Fibromyalgia?


From www.medicalmarijuanablog.com

In order to find out if marijuana reduces symptoms in fibromyalgia patients, an open clinical study with 56 patients was carried out in Spain. The study group were comprised of 28 regular cannabis users and 28 patients who didn’t use marijuana. All patients completed a total of three questionnaires relating to their fibromyalgia symptoms and their quality of life.

What is Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a syndrome — that is, it is a group of signs and symptoms which when experienced in combination suggest that the patient is suffering from a specific medical condition. As with many syndromes, the symptoms of fibromyalgia come and go and vary between patients. Some life factors can bring on symptoms or make existing ones worse, for instance:

  • Changes in the weather
  • Stress levels
  • Physical activity

The main symptoms of Fibromyalgia

  • Pain
  • Extreme sensitivity to pain, so that just the slightest touch is experienced as being painful
  • Stiffness
  • Muscle spasms
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Poor quality sleep
  • Brain fog (cognitive problems)
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Inability to regulate body temperature
  • Restless legs syndrome
  • Tinnitus
  • Anxiety
  • Depression

Study Results: Cannabis and Fibromyalgia

After 2 hours of cannabis use, visual analogue scales showed a statistically significant reduction of pain and stiffness, enhancement of relaxation, and an increase in somnolence and feeling of well being. Mental health scores in a questionnaire were higher in cannabis users than in non-users.

The Researchers concluded that “the use of cannabis was associated with beneficial effects on some Fibromyalgia symptoms.” They recommend that further studies on the usefulness of cannabinoids in Fibromyalgia
patients as well as cannabinoid system involvement in the pathophysiology of this condition are warranted.”

(Source: Fiz J, Durán M, Capellà D, Carbonell J, Farré M. Cannabis
use in patients with fibromyalgia: effect on symptoms relief and
health-related quality of life. PLoS One 2011;6(4):e18440.)

From medicalmarijunanablog.com


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  1. Vicodin and percocet are drugs that children shouldn’t touch because they are dangerous chemicals, but docs prescribe them all the time. Sometimes marijuana falls into that category… some drugs are used as medicine, while doctors have decided other ones are not good for us. I have kids too… the shortest answer is usually most effective and he won’t ask too many questions. Just don’t let him spread it around school if you want to keep it your business.

  2. My 16 yr old son sent me this to read for my FM! I was diagnosed a little over 1 yr ago and have been absolutely miserable ever since!! Crippling pain, fatigue, stomach problems and from it all, also have severe depression now! My son & family have seen me try all sorts of meds which hasnt helped at all!! He has been telling me that Fibro patients have been using cannabis to help their pain but really didnt think it was all that true til now. I`d love to try even though Im not a smoker but at this point I will try ANYTHING to have my life back and have my family not worry so much.

    My concern is my 9 yr old son! He, til now, has been told how bad it is for you and that its an illegal drug. How am I supposed to explain to him that for me its medicine and its to help me feel better?

  3. I would like to see those suffering from fibromyalgia try some RSO (Rick Simpson Oil). It may support the immune system in a more powerful way and actually cure the syndrome. Worth a try.

  4. I have had fibromyalgia for 10 yrs when I 1st had I was in horrific pain and started smoking marajwana it took away all my symptoms but I live in Australia where it’s illegal and have been prosecuted for it and have been given a court order to stop, I have come off it but I was a carerer for my mother with dementia and she past away few months ago so my symptoms have come flooding back with vengeance , I’m on series of drugs which don’t ease the pain , I relapsed when she passed and for the short time I smoked I felt free from pain but now back to intense pain I get swollen back of my legs pain in my bursa hips and spasms in my neck and back , sensitive to light and sounds but I guess I have to just live with it until my order is over as I will return as I find its the only thing keeps me free!!! I’m 53 yrs female .

  5. I agree with your comments from 9 months ago concerning cannabis and fibromyalgia, I was in an accident 2 years ago, this has left me with a lot of permanent injuries, then to add more coal to the fire i was recently told that i have fibromyalgia. I was prescribed gabapentin, and along with that was my regular pain medication tramadol. Though taking both of these drugs are considered to be beneficial, I still be in so much pain. I decided to try cannabis along with these meds and i am able to function. 

  6. I have been using cannabis for my Fibromyalgia, PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), and CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) for about 3 years now.

    It pretty much takes away all the negative symptoms of Fibromyalgia and CFS. Smoking Cannabis Indica is especially helpful. When I’m too nauseous from my medication, it helps me to eat. It helps me get out of the house and walk more. It stops my drastic body temp. changes, takes away my aches & pains, stops muscle spasms, makes me less sensitive to sounds, light, touch, tastes, smells, and chemicals. It prevents my hands from becoming numb, tingly, and in pain. I think it has even permanently helped my physical pain, my ability to eat, and my memory to stay intact.

    I smoke every single day so that I can live a full life even with Fibromyalgia. I have been smoking since age 14, and I am currently 17. Only in the past year and a half have I used marijuana as a medicine for myself. I had always felt as if it made me feel a lot better when I smoked, but never considered it as medicine til more recently. It literally helps with every single one of my problems.

    This study is completely right… People with Fibromyalgia can benefit a HUGE amount from smoking Cannabis.

  7. I have had fibromyalgia since at least 1997, I volunteer for any further studies of the benefits of marijuana on fibromyalgia.

  8. As a fibromyalgia patient, and as someone who had never used cannabis for ANY reason until a year ago, I can say with absolute certainty that marijuana helps with the debilitating pain and overwhelming fatigue I experience on a daily basis.

    As a patient advocate and fibromyalgia educator, I realize that the discussion of using cannabis for any reason other than recreational use can be a dicey one. However, my organization fully embraces cannabis as a reasonable and safe choice for fibromyalgia patients, and we support its responsible use.

    I have tried a multitude of different pharmaceuticals over the years to try and reduce my pain symptoms to no avail. Strong opiods, like oxycodone, only make me sleepy and sick to my stomach. Other pharmaceuticals marketed specifically for use in fibromyalgia patients have been seriously lacking, and are very, very expensive. Most of the time, those three BigPharma medications are not covered by health insurance.

    Granted, cannabis is not covered by health insurance, either. However, its varied methods of ingestion (smoking or vaping, edibles, suppositories, etc.) give chronic pain patients many options. I use indica strains exclusively, as research shows they are best for pain relief and easing sleep dysfunction. A bowl smoked or vaped before bedtime brings eight hours of restful sleep and leaves me feeling refreshed in the morning, something that has never happened with any BigPharma meds I’ve tried.

    Cannabis use is not for everyone, and it’s not without its risks, primarily that it’s still illegal under federal law. I realize every time I medicate that I am violating that law, and I find it very hypocritical that our government approves and endorses very dangerous and addictive BigPharma medications (like Vicodin, methadone and Morphine), yet treats a natural, nonaddictive pain-relieving medicine like cannabis with kid gloves. I am also very frustrated that our government feels the need to babysit those of us who choose the cannabis option for treatment. As an adult, and as an American, I have the right to make these kinds of choices for myself without worry of arrest or imprisonment.

    Using cannabis to treat my fibromyalgia is my choice, and mine alone.

    Lannette Johnson
    Founder and executive director, Colorado Fibromyalgia Network
    Executive committee member, National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association

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