Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia, or myofascial pain syndrome, is a medical condition characterised by chronic widespread pain and a heightened and painful response to pressure, with no clear chemical or anatomical pathology.  It is described as a central sensitization syndrome thought to be caused by abnormalities in the nervous system.

Symptoms

Patients suffering from this condition experience a variety of symptoms, the main being chronic widespread pain, such as:

– heightened pain in response to tactile pressure
– tingling sensation in various body parts
– prolonged muscle spasms
– weakness in the limbs
– nerve pain
– twitching of muscles
– palpitations

It is interesting to note that fibromyalgia is often found in patients who also suffer from migraines and irritable bowel syndrome.

Causes

We still don’t know what causes this condition but there is definitely a genetic factor as well as environmental factors such as stress and sleep disorders as well as psychological factors, such a s depression.

There is evidence suggesting that people who have this syndrome, have a endocannabinoid deficiency (Clinical Endocannabinoid Deficiency – CECD), which is the reason why treatment with cannabis, is so effective.

Treatment

For the treatment of fibromyalgia cannabis strain with a 1:1 THC:CBD ratio is a good starting point and increasing the CBD ratio often helps. High CBD strains with a 2:1 to a 20:1 ratio have also proven to efficacious, so the best thing is to try what works best for you.

The delivery methods usually used are vaporisation, tinctures and topicals.

The benefits of vaporising are the fast onset of relief and ease of titration. This is prefered to smoking as it doesn’t produce the toxic by-products of combustion.

Tinctures taken sub-lingually are a very popular method as it is quickly and efficiently absorbed and it bypasses first pass metabolism. Also patients can adjust titration more easily than via the oral route.

Topical application of cannabis infused creams on the area that is affected, also have an immediate relief of pain sensations.

Most patients have very good results once they find the right strain and titration protocol. While it does not totally get rid of the pain, it decrease its intensity by 80 – 90 %, making it possible for patients to be functional again.

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