CBD or THC for Fibromyalgia Pain and Nerve Relief?
Fibromyalgia pain is one of the most excruciating types of pain known to mankind. It’s also very difficult to treat, because even when medicating with the most powerful pharmaceutical painkillers, oftentimes it just doesn’t work.
Fibromyalgia pain varies among patients; at times it may feel like your muscles have been pulled so hard or overworked even if you didn’t do any exercise. In some cases, muscles may twitch, or you feel deep aches, pains, and burns. In other cases, fibromyalgia pain affects the joints in the shoulders, neck, hips, and back. Fibromyalgia pain can be so severe and debilitating that sleep, exercise, and rest can be impossible.
Thankfully, science and anecdotal evidence tells us that cannabis is an effective, natural treatment for fibromyalgia pain. It doesn’t have any side effects, too. But for patients with this dreaded condition, finding out the right kind of cannabis product or strain for the pain can be overwhelming. New research tells us now that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) actually works better than cannabidiol (CBD) in treating fibromyalgia pain. This news is important, as it can help patients better navigate the world of marijuana and find treatment that works.
The study, conducted by researchers from the Netherlands’ Leiden University Medical Centre with Bedrocan International, and published in the Journal of the International Association for the Study of Pain, analyzed how three types of vaporized cannabis affected chronic pain. One type of cannabis was high THC, low CBD; the other had almost an equal ratio of both, and the third was high CBD, low THC. Twenty subjects participated in the study, and they were all made to go through a battery of pain tests after vaporizing one of the cannabis types. The pain tests included one that involved applying pressure between the thumb and index finger, and electrical simulation on the legs.
The researchers found that when participants medicated with the high CBD strain, it was “devoid of analgesic activity in any of the spontaneous or evoked pain models.” In layman’s terms, this means that CBD didn’t work well in mitigating the pain.
“The most important observation is that when simultaneously inhaled, THC and CBD interact in complex fashions with synergistic pharmacokinetic but antagonistic pharmacodynamic interactions,” says the study. “The analgesic efficacy of active treatment was limited to varieties that contained THC and was observed exclusively in the evoked pressure pain model.”
According to Tjalling Erkelens, the CEO and founder of Bedrocan, the Dutch company that supplied the cannabis, the results were promising for patients. “The outcome is very important for patients who suffer from fibromyalgia. Now we have the serious clinical evidence that medical doctors are asking for when prescribing our products and that health insurance companies want to have, to legitimize reimbursement,” he says.