Fibromyalgia yielding a variety of symptoms and particularly hard to treat. Those persons who endure fibromyalgia only 35 to 40 percent get little comfort from medications which are provided to treat the condition. Even among the strong controversy surrounding the use of medical marijuana some patients are giving it a try legally or illegally to help their struggle with pain.
Dr. Stuart Silverman, a clinical professor of medicine and rheumatology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, California, state that history and ancedotally, marijuana has been used as a pain killer.
We are all aware that are bodies produce natural painkillers named endorphins, however they also produce another substance that can set off pain relief in the system named endocannabinoid. The system appears to be a major player in several procedures within the body which includes how we perceive pain. Marijuana contains cannabinoids which are alike the natural endorphins in our bodies.
Fibromyalgia patients usually witness wide spread pain throughout their body, however usually they require many medications for other symptoms which could include hard time sleeping and restless leg syndrome. Nevertheless, marijuana possibly can treat numerous symptoms and there are patients who do have results.
Logic then dictates why should not fibromyalgia patients have the opportunity to try marijuana if it is legal for medical uses in the state where they reside.
According to Dr. Silverman and other arbitrators there are two problems with its use. First off its complicated natural substance includes 60 various compounds with possible side effects some which possibly could cause a reaction between each other. The second problem is the amounts of the different compounds can differ by batch, due to the fact that marijuana is grown and not synthesized.
Dr. Silverman is hopeful that synthetic medications found on single compounds in cannabis could at some time help fibromyalgia patients. This is after controlled randomized clinic trails are done. His presented argument is that the real thing which is available today is just way to uncertain.
Dr. Mark Ware, assistant professor in family medicine and anesthesia at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, and the executive director of the Canadian Consortium for the Investigation of Cannabinoids, states that they believe there most likely is a part for that type of compounds, cannabinoids in general, and it is just a matter of figuring out how to use it in practice.
Recently Dr. Ware had published a study demonstrating that one alike compound nabilone (cesamet) helps fibromyalgia patients get better sleep. It had been more efficient amitriptyline which is a tricyclic antidepressant usually prescribed to fibromyalgia patients to alleviate pain and help sleep. Previously a study published a couple of years back discovered nabilone aided in decreasing pain and anxiety in fibromyalgia patients.
Nabilone (synthetic analog of delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol) THCTHC usually regarded as the active ingredient in cannabis. The FDA authorized the drug in 1985 for the treatment of nausea in cancer patients who were undergoing chemotherapy.
The only other cannabis based medication currently on the market in the United States is dronabinol, which is marketed as Marinol in the United States which is FDA approved in the treatment of nausea and vomiting in chemo relation. It is yet to be tested officially in fibromyalgia patients. A patient had received a prescription for Marinol in 2006.
The patient stated the medication had made them even more exhausted and did not remain in their system long. They had stayed with the drug due to the fact it was supplemented with marijuana, just not a lot of times during the day. There are times when it is not used at all for a day or week or even a month.
A third of cannabis based medicine, Staivex, is currently under clinical trails in the United States for the treatment of cancer pain. The application of the drug is sprayed under the tongue or into the cheek and contains THC and cannabidiol, a non-psychoactive compound located in cannabis that alleviates inflammation and pain and could possibly decrease side effects of THC like anxiety along with a number of other compounds.
Dr. Ethan Russo, a senior medical advisor to GW Pharmaceuticals that manufactures Sativex, and a study physician for the United States clinical trails in progress for cancer treatments state it is very likely that cannabis based medications could aide those who suffer fibromyalgia based on available science. He is also optimistic Sativex will receive FDA approval for the treatment of cancer pain in 2013. While a hypothetical foundation Sativex possibly aiding fibromyalgia symptoms is very sound, it is known to be very useful with neuropathic pain and sleep disruption in numerous conditions, its final benefit in fibromyalgia can only be proven in a significant useful manner through formal randomized clinical trails.
Dr. Ware states that right now that persons with fibromyalgia are receiving no benefits from their current treatments may wish to discuss with their physician about using Nabilone. Many physicians are unaware that the cannabinoids are in existence.
Be aware that these medications do carry side effects. Most common is dizziness, dry mouth and drowsiness.
Federal law in Canada gives patients permission for the use of medical marijuana with a physicians support it can not be prescribed due to the fact it is not a approved drug in Canada. The patient goes through the application process and the drug is delivered straight to the patient. It is grown under controlled conditions of the government.
Dr. Ware comments that he does have patients with a span of pain syndromes who have had all other treatments not work and for who herbal cannabis had been the only real choice to maintain their symptoms. In those cases he will aide the patient to obtain the card required for authorization to possess the drug.
However, in the United States the legalization of medical marijuana is left determined by each individual state. Currently it is approved in fourteen states one of which is Michigan. The rules and regulations do vary by each state. Yet still many patients who are using medical marijuana are still fearful of legal ramifications.
Today 90% of persons who suffer with fibromyalgia use alternative treatments. Below are listed some the more popular ones used and also used by CAM.
Praised by millions of suffers today is chiropractic treatment for their fibromyalgia. Chiropractic care has been demonstrated to decrease the agonizing pain and joint stiffness of fibromyalgia. Spinal adjustments of the spine and pelvis by hands on adjustments are usually used. As their joint functioning becomes better patients have witnessed a decrease in pain and in various cases total elimination of the pain. As the pain has been decreased or eliminated it has also has aided the patient in improved sleep, fatigue and depression. Chiropractic care has aided thousands with fibromyalgia including Retired Brigadier General Becky Halstead , the very first woman General in the United States Army to lead command in Iraq. She had endured fibromyalgia while in service. She had stated that the treatments and nutritional advice from her chiropractor had aided in treating her fibromyalgia and overall made her feel much better on a daily basis.
Studies are finding that acupuncture treatments may be beneficial in some patients with fibromyalgia. In some patients the acupuncture has been known to last for weeks at a time in pain reduction. However, it does not work for all patients. It is dependent upon the person.
Swedish and Deep Tissue massage is the top rated massages for fibromyalgia patients. Patients have shown a 38% decrease of pain symptoms after a thirty minute massage. They also noted they had less problems for sleeping.
National Center for Alternative and Complimentary Medicine
Medical News Today