Cannabis and Huntington’s Disease
Huntington’s disease (HD, Huntington’s chorea) is a genetic condition that causes the degeneration of nerve cells in the brain. Though the disease is carried from birth, symptoms may not show until later in life. HD leads to movement impairment as well as cognitive and psychiatric disorders that carry with them a wide spectrum of symptoms. Once symptoms begin to present, the patient’s functional abilities gradually worsen over time. Eventually, a person with the disease requires assistance with all of their daily functions.
Treatment for Huntington’s Disease
Treatments are limited to those that reduce painful symptoms and improve a patient’s quality of life as the disease progresses. Powerful medications are commonly prescribed to manage tremors, seizures and psychiatric disorders. Dosages are increased over time until these drugs become ineffective, and the side effects outweigh their benefits. Other treatments that may help patients cope with the progression of the HD include:
● Speech therapy
● Physical therapy
● Opioid treatment
● Support aids
Medical Cannabis for Huntington’s Disease Treatment
Research on the treatment of Huntington’s disease with marijuana is limited because of marijuana’s federal classification as a schedule 1 controlled substance. However, anecdotal evidence supports the theory that cannabis is effective in managing some of the symptoms it presents. For one thing, cannabis has been shown to reduce inflammation throughout the body and reduce pain and cramping. It has also been shown to control tremors and seizures. Finally, THC and CBD are known to improve a person’s mood and can treat the depression, fear, and anxiety associated with Huntington’s chorea.
New Research on Marijuana and Huntington’s Disease
Preliminary research indicates that not only does cannabis provide relief from symptoms, but may slow down the progression of the disease. CBD has been shown to have neuroprotective properties, which can resist the deterioration of neurons in the brain and spinal cord. Recently an exciting study shows that THCA, a non-psychoactive acidic precursor to THC, can reduce inflammation and also serve as a neuroprotective. The medical uses for THCA have been long overlooked because when cannabis is heated up (as is typical during the act of smoking, vaporizing or cooking with cannabis), the THCA has converted to THC; a heavily studied as well as, better-understood cannabinoid. More research is needed. But the potential for cannabis therapy for medical marijuana patients who have Huntington’s disease seems very promising.
Side Effects of Marijuana Therapy for Huntington’s Disease
The side effects of the pharmaceuticals used to treat HD can range from moderate to severe. Since larger dosages are required as the disease inevitably progresses, those negative effects tend to add to the patient’s suffering. Effectively, there’s little risk for trying cannabis to control the symptoms of HD. Marijuana has no contraindications with other medications, and its side effects are comparatively mild.
Visit Revolutionary Clinics Today for All of Your MMJ Needs
Revolutionary Clinics has a varied assortment of infused edibles that registered patients with HD may prefer. Concentrates, flower, and topicals are also available in different strains and varying levels of potency. We offer daily and weekly deals so you can find the product that best suits your symptoms and you can increase your intake as it becomes necessary. If your symptoms are keeping you away from our dispensary, feel free to order online, and we can deliver to you in Somerville and the surrounding areas.