Effects of CBD on Parkinson’s DiseaseJuly 12, 2018
Current evidence suggests that CBD can treat some Parkinson’s Disease symptoms including movement impairments, sleep disturbances, and psychosis.
THC also shows promise as a treatment for Parkinson’s disease. However, CBD is better-studied, has fewer side effects, and has an overall better safety profile.
As the elderly population increases, treatment for diseases like Parkinson’s are needed for more and more patients. Overall, cannabinoids like CBD have a promising future in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.
CBD shows promise in treating symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. However, it is not the only cannabinoid that might help. Researchers are also looking at whether THC can treat Parkinson’s as well.
A 2014 study found that movement dysfunction in Parkinson’s patients improved when using THC-rich marijuana. These improvements were found in overall movement deficiencies and specific motor dysfunctions like tremor, rigidity and slowed movements.
The study also noted that these patients showed improvements in sleep and pain.
This suggests that Parkinson’s patients may benefit from using a combination of cannabinoids. THC and CBD, when used together, may help target a wider range of Parkinson’s symptoms, and may offer a better overall improvement than either cannabinoid used alone.
Medical Marijuana Is Approved for Parkinson’s in a Few States
In five states (Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Mexico and New York), Parkinson’s disease is an approved condition for use of medical marijuana. In some states, however, this diagnosis alone does not make a person eligible for the drug. In New York, for instance, one must have Parkinson’s Disease plus at least one approved associated condition — extreme malnutrition, severe or chronic pain, severe nausea, seizures, or severe or persistent muscle spasms. With regard to the latter, it’s worth pointing out that if people with Parkinson’s experience muscle problems they are more often cramps rather than spasms.
The District of Columbia and 23 states have passed legislation allowing the use of marijuana-based products for medical purposes. The approved medical conditions, cannabinoid formulations (Minnesota and New York do not permit smoked cannabis, for example), and patient and physician requirements are different for each state. Typically patients must register in order to possess and use cannabinoids, and physician documentation of an approved condition is required for patient registration. Under federal law, doctors cannot prescribe cannabinoids, but state guidelines authorize qualified doctors to issue “certifications” that allow patients to obtain medical marijuana.