Cannabinoids & Multiple Sclerosis

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The March health calendar drives awareness of the condition of Multiple Sclerosis. Almost 3 million people suffer from MS  around the globe. Symptoms vary but essentially the myelin sheath that encases the nerve cells begins to degrade, exposing the nerves to damage, resulting in loss of function, pain, and nervous system degeneration. There is no cure for MS but there are medicines to treat symptoms, and patients often end up on a cocktail of pharmaceuticals.

People want natural alternatives, and there is interest in how cannabinoids can help. In 2003, the US Government patented cannabinoids as neuroprotective antioxidants, and since MS is a neurodegenerative illness, there is much promise. When you do a search on Cannabis + MS in PubMed you get  7,419 studies that detail the research taking place on how cannabinoids may relieve symptoms or treat specific aspects of the disease. Imagine one day being able to use CBD or THC or any of the other cannabinoids in a specific potency through ratios that will target your specific issues to prevent the nerves from dying, preserve functionality, provide energy, lift mood, and reduce painful spasms. It’s not that far off really.

Common symptoms of MS include; pain, spasticity, numbness, neuropathies, interstitial cystitis, depression, sleep issues, balance problems, loss of vision, and more. GW Pharmaceuticals drug name Sativex is a 1:1 oil of CBD:THC, and it is on the market in 25 countries around the world to treat many of those symptoms. If you look up  Sativex in PubMed there are 454 studies on the efficacy of that medicine compared to conventional disease-modifying therapies, or DMT drugs. Many of these studies show greater efficacy with fewer side effects.  Sativex has been proven to work long term without losing its power, and there are no tolerance or addiction problems with this 1:1 CBD THC oil.

Sativex is in Phase 3 Clinical Trials here in the United States. This is exciting news for those who suffer in America awaiting this option. A 5mgs Sativex spray will dose 2.5mgs of CBD & 2.5mgs of THC per spray.  446 Participants in the study will get up to 12 sprays per day to evaluate safety, efficacy, side effects, and costs for Sativex compared to placebo on muscle spasticity. If approved, GW will win FDA approval, and probably price this oil comparable to Epidiolex, approved in 2018 for refractory seizure conditions. This 100mg/ml formula sells for $36,000 per year. That’s a very expensive drug, but if it stops children from having 300 seizures each week, it is a good deal when you think of the life-changing ramifications.

Actually, Sativex is already on the shelf in American dispensaries; as a 1:1 CBD:THC tincture. Potency will vary, but bottles contain anywhere from 300mgs to 3000mgs of cannabinoids in 30ml of volume.  The average price is $100 – $300 per bottle, which is a lot more approachable than the FDA version at $3000. Please ensure your oils are of standardized quality that will be safe, consistent, effective, and predictable.  Make sure you view the COA or Certificate of Analysis on any bottles of tincture you buy at the dispensary to ensure it is tested for potency, purity, contaminants, and that you can get the results for each batch of oil.

Millions of MS patients are using cannabinoids as medicine today. The MS Society has a set of links that details each one of their articles on the subject which we would love for you to share. Holistic Caring also has a Patient Program on Parkinson’s and MS available through our store. It details how the ECS can be modified to relieve symptoms and enhance quality of life through CBD and microdoses of THC. A 60-minute lecture is accompanied by slides, lecture notes, references to explore, and bonus videos on CBD basics and holistic health.

Our hope and prayers are for life to resume as more of us are vaccinated and the world reopens. Our ECS can be supported as we respond to the stress with CBD and our plant allies to help you eat, sleep, relax, forget, and protect. In the meantime, stay safe and well, and learn and apply the principles of cannabis medicine to your life with our guidance and assistance. Explore our programs and let us know how we can elevate your learning.

Please let us know if we can be of assistance to you or anyone you love.

In health and with love, Elisabeth Mack and the Holistic Caring Team

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