Marijuana And Multiple Sclerosis / Muscle Spasms

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Movement Disorders stated in a 2004 article “Survey on Cannabis Use in Parkinson’s Disease” (Vol. 19, No. 9, pp. 1102-1106, Sept. 2004) by researchers from the Movement Disorders Centre, Dept. of Neurology at Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic:

“An anonymous questionnaire sent to all patients attending the Prague Movement Disorder Centre revealed that 25% of 339 respondents had taken cannabis and 45.9% of these described some form of benefit….

The late onset of cannabis action is noteworthy. Because most patients reported that improvement occurred approximately two months after the first use of cannabis, it is very unlikely that it could be attributed to a placebo reaction.”
(9/04) Movement Disorders

The Journal of Cannabis Therapeutics (JCT) reported in an 2001 article by researchers at GW Pharmaceuticals (Vol. 1, No. 3/4, 2001, pp. 183-205):

“Some patients with multiple sclerosis who smoke cannabis [marijuana] report relief of spasm and pain after the second or third puff of a cannabis cigarette. This implies very rapid transit to, and absorption into the central nervous system. The time involved is seconds rather than minutes.”
(2001) Journal of Cannabis Therapeutics

Americans For Safe Access (ASA), a patient advocacy non-profit group, states in their booklet “Medical Marijuana and Multiple Sclerosis,” available on their website as of 12/20/05:

“Many MS patients report that cannabis has a startling and profound effect on muscle spasms, tremors, balance, bladder control, speech and eyesight. Many wheel-chair-bound patients report that they can walk unaided when they have smoked cannabis….

Numerous case studies, surveys and double-blind studies have reported improvement in patients treated with cannabinoids for symptoms including spasticity…

Cannabinoids have been shown in animal models to measurably lessen MS symptoms and may also halt the progression of the disease.”
(2005) ASA

Britain’s House of Lords’ Science and Technology Committee (HOLC), published the November 1998 report Cannabis: The Scientific and Medical Evidence, which stated:

“We have received enough anecdotal evidence to convince us that cannabis almost certainly does have genuine medical applications, especially in treating the painful muscular spasms and other symptoms of MS and in the control of other forms of pain…

We therefore recommend that the Government should take steps to transfer cannabis and cannabis resin from Schedule 1 of the Misuse of Drugs Regulations to Schedule 2, so as to allow doctors to prescribe an appropriate preparation of cannabis, albeit as an unlicensed medicine and on the named-patient basis, and to allow doctors and pharmacists to supply the drug prescribed.”
(11/1998) HOLC

Montel Williams, national talk show host and writer, wrote in his 2004 book Climbing Higher about his support for medical marijuana:

“I spent 22 years in the service supporting, defending our Constitution of the United States, I fought in the war against drugs. I want to tell you right now in this country, we need to start thinking about compassion.

How dare someone tell me they can prescribe morphine, vicodin, percocet. Make the drugs most addictive, name the most addictive drug, they can give me and I can be a walking member of the society by taking that garbage, but my doctor, who has prescribed it for me, can’t prescribe medicinal marijuana? Why? Because we have an idea everybody who does it sits around smoking.

There are 50 different ways to utilize it. You can eat it; you can process it into a liquid; or you can turn it into a pill form. The willow tree was taken apart about 200 years ago and turned into aspirin. And we all take it.”
(2004) Montel Williams

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Source: ProCon.org
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