Last week, the Arthritis Society of Canada made a decision to fund a study on treating fibromyalgia with medical marijuana. Dr. Mark Ware of McGill University has already gained the reputation of a leader in the field of pain research. In his new study, Dr. Ware will investigate the impact of oral cannabinoids on fibromyalgia—an illness that attacks more than 520,000 people in Canada, mainly females.
This is the second time the Arthritis Society has offered financial support to a medical marijuana study. Last year, the Society awarded Dr. Jason McDougall with a three-year grant to study the treatment of arthritis with medical cannabis.
Unfortunately, conventional medicine does not provide effective options for managing arthritis pain. Both fibromyalgia patients and doctors need to know whether they can consider medical marijuana for treating the symptoms of arthritis. With these grants, the Arthritis Society wants to fill the gaps in medical marijuana research, but their efforts are not enough to gain the crucial knowledge. Thus, the Society is calling on the federal government to include a provision of a $25-million investment in medical marijuana research over the next five years into the 2017 budget.
Fibromyalgia is a chronic disorder accompanied by widespread pain in muscles and bones that affects the central nervous system and causes fatigue, mood swings, and sleep difficulties. Some patients also experience troubles with memory, concentration, and digestion.
However, those patients who used medical cannabis for treating the symptoms of fibromyalgia reported that marijuana helped them manage their chronic pain and improved their overall state. Unfortunately, due to the lack of large-scale clinical studies, there is no exhaustive information about the possible advantages and disadvantages of using oral marijuana for treating fibromyalgia.
Dr. Wale is sure that this disorder has a huge influence on the patient's life, but current options for treating fibromyalgia are not always effective. Moreover, using opioids or other strong medicines for alleviating fibromyalgia pain often results in serious side effects. In contrast, oral cannabinoids have the potential to relieve the symptoms of the disease and improve the patient's life without harming their health.