Cannabinoids and Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia is a disease of unknown etiology and is associated with generalized chronic pain, fatigue, allodynia and excessive sensitivity to pain in multiple body areas and defined points.
Other common symptoms among people who suffer from fibromyalgia are difficulty sleeping, morning stiffness, headaches, painful menstrual periods in the case of women, tingling or numbness in hands and/or feet, lack of memory or difficulty concentrating.
It is believed that the disease is due to an abnormal function of the central nervous system (where the amplification of the pain signals originates) which causes stimuli, that in normal conditions would not cause pain, to be perceived as highly painful (allodynia).
As fibromyalgia is difficult to control with analgesics, many patients seek to alleviate their pain with alternative therapies such as cannabinoids. Although there is still a lack of clinical studies on the effect of medicinal cannabis and this disease, it has been shown that the consumption of cannabis derivatives has beneficial effects on some symptoms of fibromyalgia, such as pain relief and stiffness, thus improving the quality of life of the patients. (Fiz y cols.,2011) .
Benefits of using cannabinoids for Fibromyalgia
- Cannabinoids decrease pain reactivity
- Activation of descending inhibitory system pathways
- Treatment for chronic pain
- Treatment for neuropathic pain
- Analgesic effects
The analgesic effect of cannabinoids is one of its best-characterized effects. The results of the studies suggest that cannabinoids could offer some benefit as a treatment against the pain that people with fibromyalgia suffer.
Studies about the treatment of fibromyalgia with therapeutic cannabinoids
A 2008 study (randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled) showed a significant improvement of pain, and many parameters associated with fibromyalgia, after the administration of nabilone (a synthetic cannabinoid) over two weeks .
In another study, in 2011, it was possible to observe, in addition to an improvement of pain and stiffness, an increase in the general welfare of the patient after the administration of both vaporized and oral cannabis .
Due to the therapeutic potential of cannabinoids in the treatment of fibromyalgia and the low supply of existing effective treatments, numerous studies are being carried out to better understand both the disease and its possible treatments.
That is why we are conducting a study with patients with fibromyalgia to be able to determine, at a scientific level, the therapeutic potential that cannabis has for this type of illness.
Bibliography for Fibromyalgia and Cannabinoids
 PA, Ste-Marie et al. 2012 Association of herbal cannabis use with negative psychosocial parameters in patients with fibromyalgia. Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken). 2012 Aug;64(8):1202-8.
 Skrabek et al. 2008. Nabilone for the treatment of pain in fibromyalgia. The Journal of Pain 9: 164-173.
 Jimena Fiz,Marta Durán, Dolors Capellà, Jordi Carbonell, Magí Farré, 2011. Cannabis Use in Patients with Fibromyalgia: Effect on Symptoms Relief and Health-Related Quality of Life
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