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Arthritis​

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Arthritis​ and Medical Marijuana

There are dozens of specific joint pain or diseases, according to the Arthritis Foundation. They report more than 50 million adults and 300,000 children in America suffer from the condition that happens to be the leading cause of disability in the U.S.  Americans for Safe Access compares the harsh side effects of conventional arthritis medications to the low-risk side effects of cannabis. According to board-certified child and adult neurologist Dr. Ethan Russo, “patients have long told us that cannabis has been helpful to them in the treatment of their arthritic conditions.”

Types of Arthritis

Arthritis is classified as degenerative, inflammatory, infectious, and metabolic. Degenerative occurs when bone on bone contact causes pain and stiffness; inflammatory takes place when there are joint inflammation and erosion; infectious occurs when bacteria or a virus enter joints; and metabolic takes place when uric acid creates crystal needles in the joint.  

The Centers for Disease Control report (CDC) the percentage of adults who suffer from the condition varies depending on the state they live in, concluding one in four adults equaling up to 33.6% in the southeast of the U.S. have arthritis. The CDC reports that juvenile arthritis has the symptoms as an adult, including joint swelling, pain, and stiffness making dressing and playing tiresome and hurtful. Unlike the elderly who have degenerative arthritis, the cause of adolescent arthritis remains unexplained.  

Using CBD and THC for Arthritis 

The Arthritis Society reports medical cannabis has been prescribed in Canada since 2001. The society says most arthritic patients begin solely using CBC before introducing THC into treatment. While the non-euphoric component of CBD is prescribed for inflammation, pain, anxiety, and insomnia, the intoxicating agent of THC treats pain, stress, tension, and nausea. A 2016 Quebec Forum on Arthritis Dr. Jason McDougall and Dr. Mark Ware discussed up to two-thirds of Canadians use medical cannabis specifically for arthritic pain. 

CreakyJoints, arthritis education group, surveyed the 2019 Annual European Congress of Rheumatology in Spain, reporting the prevalent use of CBD for arthritic pain in patients. While 46% of patients had rheumatoid arthritis, and 22% had osteoarthritis, the rest were diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis, fibromyalgia, and ankylosing spondylitis. 

Out of 1,059 patients age 57 years old, up to 57% report using CBD or medical cannabis. 

Along with treating inflammation and pain, newfound evidence shows that medical cannabis can regenerate bone growth. Cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 at bone level prove to heal bone tissue. The reported benefits of CBD and THC for arthritic pain continue to mount as more sufferers try medical cannabis for relief. With more research and study, the two components of cannabis now considered suitable for arthritic will continue to prove the same.  

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Data Last Updated 06/08/2020

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