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Patients Report Cannabis Eases Spasticity in Multiple Sclerosis

More than one-third of MS patients with spasticity report current cannabis use

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Cannabis use is common among multiple sclerosis (MS) patients with spasticity, according to a research letter published online Feb. 11 in Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders.

Jessica Rice, M.D., from the Oregon Health and Science University in Portland, and colleagues characterized cannabis use among patients (≥18 years of age) with MS and self-reported lower-extremity spasticity.

The researchers found that 54 percent of patients reported ever using cannabis and 36 percent reported current use. Of those who used cannabis, 79 percent reported multiple routes of administration, and 58 percent reported at least daily use. More than three-quarters of patients (79 percent) reported finding cannabis helpful for spasticity. Just over one-quarter (26 percent) used cannabis and prescribed oral antispasticity medications.

“While evidence supports the benefit of certain cannabinoid formulations for improving self-reported MS-associated spasticity, these specific formulations are not available in the United States, and the products in states where cannabis is legal are heterogeneous in their purity and cannabinoid content,” the authors write. “This makes it difficult to provide evidence-based recommendations to patients.”

Two authors disclosed financial ties to Adamas Pharmaceuticals and/or Greenwich Biosciences.

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