The Center for Peripheral Neuropathy at the University of Chicago defines neuropathy not as a single disease but rather as a “series of disorders that result from damage to the body’s peripheral nervous system(PNS).” People who suffer from peripheral neuropathy deal with the loss of sensation, numbness, weakness, burning or tingling pain in the extremities. medical marijuana neuropathyConventional treatment for patients with neuropathic pain consists of prescription medication, injection therapy, and physical therapy. While the use of injection and physical therapy in addition to prescribed medication, there is a critical issue with prescription drugs as treatment for neuropathic pain. The effective dosage of the drug that is necessary to suppress the pain increases as the condition progresses; the side effects that arise due to the medications used to treat the disease may worsen patients’ conditions and quality of life.


Research strongly suggests the use of medical marijuana as an alternative way to effectively reduce pain in patients dealing with antiretroviral therapy, chemotherapy, or even as a substitute for painkillers. However, the federal government still classifies medical marijuana as a schedule 1 drug which determines that cannabis has “no currently accepted medical use;” as an article published in the Neuropathy-Journal reports. 

Despite the challenges and the stigma that medical marijuana faces, sufficient studies confirm the ability of medical marijuana to relieve symptoms of patients who suffer from neuropathic pain. In Florida, patients have reported great results with topical products such as Trulieve’s topical ointment.

medical marijuana neuropathy treatment

In 2010 a study conducted a controlled trial to test the effects of smoked cannabis for chronic neuropathic pain. Their findings reported that “a single inhalation of 25 mg of 9.4% tetrahydrocannabinol herbal cannabis three times daily for five days reduced the intensity of pain, improved sleep and was well tolerated.” The study further showed that oral cannabinoids such as tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiol, and nabilone have, “alone and in combination, shown efficacy in central and peripheral neuropathic pain, rheumatoid arthritis, and fibromyalgia.” While a study done in 2013 demonstrated that “cannabis has analgesic efficacy with the low dose being as effective a pain reliever as the medium dose;” opening the doors of alternative treatment for patients that are resistant to conventional ways of managing their pain. Moreover, a 2012 study reported that cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive component of marijuana, and its modified derivatives “significantly suppress chronic inflammatory and neuropathic pain without causing apparent analgesic tolerance.” The study further sustains that the analgesic potency of 11 structurally similar cannabinoids are positively correlated with the potentiation of glycine receptors(GlyRs) and don’t show a correlation with the “binding affinity for CB1 and CB2 receptors, nor their psychoactive side effects.” These findings offer a peace of mind to patients that are worried about the psychoactive effects associated with the use of marijuana and hence maybe skeptical about this alternative route.

In 2017 published an article that discussed the cannabis strains that are best in treating neuropathic pain; the choices offered are based on the strains’ chemical makeup including “cannabinoids, terpene profiles, and THC-TO-CBD ratios.” The balanced hybrid White Widow is highly recommended for its “pain, stress and sleep-relief qualities,” and it will provide a boost of energy to its users. If, on the other hand, the patient is looking for a way to rest while dealing with the pain then Afghan Kush, a strong Indica strand, is an alternative; due to its resin content, it has a heavy relaxation and pain relief effect on the body. For patients looking for a way to manage their pain while going on about their daily routine, the Sativa-dominant hybrid Jack Flash may be a more desirable option. The strand is known to be a painkiller and neuro-protector, and it has been shown “to have antitumor and inflammation effects.” Patients suffering from neuropathic pain have reported some concerns about the side effect of smoking cannabis; hence, a better option for patients that have those concerns could be found in vaporizing cannabis. The vaporizer “dehydrates the flower and releases the cannabinoids without ever catching fire,” eliminating the carcinogenic chemicals and smoke that result from combusting the flower.

Weather smoking cannabis or using a vaporizer, studies strongly suggest that medical marijuana is efficient in managing and reducing the pain associated with neuropathy. Furthermore, while some dependency on the habit of consuming medical marijuana is a noted concern of patients, the overall effect of addiction to cannabis is still up for debate and is substantially less than the addictive properties of opiates, and other FDA approved drugs.

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Leave a Reply

  1. christian laboy

    It Reroutes the neurons in ya brain so logically my brain has a super duty super highway juzt routes everywhere maybe the reason for wittyness

  2. Sharon M.

    An excellent article, explaining the effectiveness of cannabis, which is verified by clinical trials. Also, this articles gives examples of the cannabis strains that can be useful especially for neuropathic pain. Thank you!

  3. terry cain

    Here is my comment. When I was 17 years old, I was sitting in the medium on US 19 in Florida waiting to cross. A drunk driver changed lanes to keep from hitting another car and t-boned my car sitting in the medium. My car was split into 2 pieces, the front half of the car went across the street and struck another car . My body was thrown out of the back half . I was recessitated laying in the middle of the hi-way. it broke my back in two places herniated every disk. 2 to 8 mm. broke my neck ripped my leg off. broke ribs, jaw, hands and head trama. was in a coma for 3 days when I woke I was told I was lucky to be alive but would probably never walk again. I have been on every pain med there is and If I had as many needles sticking out of me as what has been stuck in me I would look like porqupine.( Then I got old.) I voted for medical marajuana at two elections. I watched through the years how even the Charloette’s Web for the children dragged their feet to impliment it. I finally said enough. I decided I’d sell my house and everything I owned at the age of 61and move to a state where medical marijuana was available. I immeadiately contacted a medical doctor and got evaluated. I was told there was many types and many ways to use it, so we would start out on a small dosage. It was mostly CBD. It didn’t seem to do much for my pain, anxiety or sleep apena. I tried edibales, topicals, and oils, but still no great relief. Went back to the doctor, was told that it time to try higher level of THC. This BLEW MY MIND! After living 45 years of constant pain, depression, and doom and gloom, I have just found a miracle. A pure gift from GOD! My pain, my anxiety, my depression was cut in half. I started elimating narcotics, sleeping pills, depression pills, anxiety pills. With in two months my meds got cut in half. My weight has went from 136lbs to 156lbs now. I still suffer from disabilating migrane headaches that I have had for ten years. The doctors up here suggested I have a brain scan done. This was never offered to me in Fl. only increase the meds.The results showed that I have two brain aneyurism’s, not large enough to do surgery on, but must have scans now 3 times of year to measure growth but if they ruptured, I would be dead in 2 to 3 seconds. Here’s the bummer of it all. Do I want to die up here and leave my wife all alone, knowing no-body, and no family or do I sell my house here and go back to Fl. where she has family? This is a no brainer for me! So I guess if the state of FL. wants to throw me in jail or lock me up, this will give her a break from me. I could only wish that Rick Scott could suffer from impacted wisdom tooth and have a choice of taking a narcotic or suck on a piece of candy. Shame on you Rick! God Bless John Morgan! God bless Donald Trump if he does what he says he is going to do also!

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