April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month.
What Is Parkinsons Disease?
Parkinson’s disease is a disorder that affects more than 10 million people worldwide. Men are more often affected (50% +) than women and the diagnosis is made usually before age 50. It is a non-curable neurological movement disorder that attacks the central nervous system causing tremors, inability to flex limbs and joints, slowness of movement, and physical imbalance oftentimes causing droopy shoulders, bowed head, and a backwards lean.
Although the cause is mostly still unknown, experts do know that there is brain degeneration in a small part of the brain called the substantial nigra. This causes a lack of dopamine in the brain and along with the tremors and other symptoms, it also causes depression, pain, sleep disorders and much more.
Medications can be given to those affected with Parkinsons. Patients may experience improvements in symptoms, but through time, those improvements may lessen or become less reliable. There is research showing that the use of medical marijuana can help Parkinsons patients lead a better life and relieve symptoms associated with it.
Studies show that medical marijuana has been shown to help with many of the symptoms associated with Parkinsons. A study led by Dr. Camille Carrol appeared in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry shows that “Cannabinoids such as Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol [THC] are neuroprotective in animal and cell culture models of Parkinson’s disease.” The research team found that THC and CBD have a direct effect against cell degeneration in Parkinsons patients through treatment with medical cannabis. (http://www.leafscience.com/2013/10/16/cannabinoids-slow-parkinsons-study-explains/)
To date, there is no cure for patients who have Parkinsons Disease. There are pharmaceutical drugs that help the patient manage the symptoms but as with most medications, they seem to be less effective in the long run. Recently, studies show that medical marijuana is a safe addition to the prescribed drugs that help alleviate many of the negative symptoms and help make the patient more comfortable.
To learn more about the effects of medical marijuana in treating Parkinsons:
YouTube Video: “Medical marijuana helps me with my attitude, with shaking, helps me deal with my new life. It helps me tremendously, helps me to have a good attitude about myself, “ said David Sparza, who suffers from Parkinson’s Disease. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1QgBrOYaVOk)
Cannabis for Parkinsons: http://www.wakingtimes.com/2015/11/25/cannabis-for-parkinsons-scientific-evidence-is-compelling/