Marijuana For Fibromyalgia Pain
Feeling No Fibromyalgia Pain
If you remember back to the 60’s and 70’s, you have probably heard the expression: “feeling no pain” and you probably heard the expression in relation to someone being stoned on marijuana. It turns out the expression wasn’t so far off from the truth. In February of 2008, The Journal of Pain published a study that showed that a synthesized form of marijuana known as nabilone brought about a remarkable decrease in pain and in anxious feelings in patients suffering from fibromyalgia.
Pain Management For Fibromyalgia
How to manage the pain of fibromyalgia is a question which the medical community has only begun to address, but address it they must now that around 12 million Americans have been diagnosed with the incurable syndrome which causes tissue and muscle pain along with a host of other symptoms. Women get the disease more often than men and there is a correlation with growing older. 7% of women aged 65 years and older have fibromyalgia.
The nabilone trial was carried out by Canadian researchers at the University of Manitoba Rehabilitation Hospital. Forty participants were divided into two groups, with one group being treated with nabilone, while the others received a placebo. The two groups were treated over a four week period. The study authors made mention of the fact that this study was the first to review nabilone as a treatment for pain reduction as well as for the improvement of daily life for fibromyalgia patients by means of a controlled study on random subjects. Nabilone is one of only two oral compounds available in Canada that includes compounds based on the active ingredients in marijuana, or cannabinoids. The drug is already approved for the treatment of the side effects of cancer treatment.
Baseline scores on the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ) as compared with the results of the nabilone group showed the latter group had much less pain and anxiety. While the pain relief with the drug was significant, it was not total.
Most fibromyalgia patients are found to be hypersensitive to the effects of most medicines; however, the nabilone was well tolerated by all the patients in the study. One unfortunate implication of treating patients with nabilone is that only wealthy patients will be able to afford treatment, since a year’s supply of nabilone may cost $4000.00.
Study authors would like to see the medical community consider nabilone as a treatment to use in combination with traditional fibromyalgia medications.