Cannabis Extracts Effective In Treatment Of Pain-Related MS Symptoms, Study Says

London, United Kingdom: Cannabis extracts reduce neuropathic pain and pain-related sleep disturbances in Multiple Sclerosis patients unresponsive to standard treatment, according to clinical trial data published in the current issue of Neurology.

Sixty-six patients participated in the double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Volunteers self-administered Sativex, a whole plant medicinal cannabis extract containing precise doses of the cannabinoids THC and cannabidiol (CBD), as an adjunctive analgesic treatment to their existing medications throughout the trial.

“Our findings demonstrate that Sativex was effective in reducing both central pain in MS and pain-related sleep disturbance in a population with moderate to severe central pain inadequately relieved by existing medication,” principle investigator Carolyn Young stated in a press release.

In previous clinical trials, Sativex has been demonstrated to alleviate numerous MS-associated symptoms compared to placebo, including pain, muscle spasms, and bladder incontinence.

The drug, now available in Canada, is pending regulatory approval in the United Kingdom.

For more information, please contact Paul Armentano, NORML Senior Policy Analyst, at (202) 483-5500. Full text of the study, “Randomized, controlled trial of cannabis-based medicine in central pain in multiple sclerosis,” appears in the September 27, 2005 issue of Neurology.