Almost 25% of patients with Parkinson’s disease reported that they had used cannabis in the prior six months in a survey from the Parkinson’s Foundation. A report on the survey, “Weeding through the haze: A survey on cannabis use among people living with Parkinson’s disease in the US,” was published last week in the journal NPJ Parkinson’s Disease.
In the report, the authors note that Parkinson’s disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder, affecting more than 1 million Americans at a cost to society of more than $50 billion dollars. The disease causes a variety of motor symptoms such as tremors, rigidity, and an unstable posture. Less well-known symptoms include sleep disorders, cognitive changes, pain, anxiety, depression, and hallucinations.
Parkinson’s disease patients typically use pharmaceutical medications to treat their condition with varying degrees of success. However, common treatments do not address the non-motor symptoms and can sometimes cause side effects including dyskinesia, an abnormality or impairment of voluntary movement.
As a result, many patients turn to complementary or alternative treatments for their disease.
One such alternative treatment is cannabis. In a Colorado survey, some participants reported that cannabis was the most effective alternative theory.
“The medicinal use of