Yo, what’s good? It’s your boy Dan and I’m here to talk about CBD and rheumatism. For those who don’t know, rheumatism, also known as rheumatoid arthritis or just arthritis, is when your joints, tissues, and muscles become inflamed causing chronic pain and stiffness. This is a serious problem that affects over 50 million adults in the US alone. Unfortunately, there isn’t a cure for rheumatism yet, but researchers are looking into new treatment options and CBD might just be one of them.
So, what exactly is CBD? Well, it’s a cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant that interacts with our body’s endocannabinoid system which regulates important functions in our bodies such as our immune system, pain perception, appetite, sleep, and mood. Recently, the US Food and Drug Administration approved the first drug made with CBD from the cannabis plant for the treatment of epilepsy. But when it comes to treating rheumatism with CBD, studies haven’t been as conclusive.
One study conducted in 2014 by medical doctor Mary-Ann Fitzcharles concluded that cannabis had been shown “inferior to all other analgesic classes other than opioids.” She’s also cautious about the use of CBD for rheumatism saying that there is “little scientific evidence for CBD’s effectiveness in reducing pain in rheumatic individuals.”
However, other scientists are still digging deeper into this matter. In 2016, researchers from the University of Kentucky College of Medicine tested out transdermal CBD gels on rat models of arthritis to see how it affected pain and inflammation. Scientists from the University of Australia are also exploring the presence of the endocannabinoid system within joints and its role in the pathophysiology of rheumatism. Future findings in this area could pave the way to new cannabinoid-based innovations.
Doctors usually prescribe opioids, steroid injections and similar treatments to sufferers of rheumatoid arthritis, but these drugs come with significant drawbacks. The chronic use of strong medications such as opioids poses significant health risks including addiction and overdose. Plus, many of these pharmaceuticals also have severe side effects like liver, kidney and bone damage, weight gain or stomach irritation. As patients are treated with these drugs, their bodies will adapt to them over time so that they will require higher doses for their pain relief which will exacerbate the side effects even more.
On the other hand, CBD has a good safety profile according to the World Health Organization (WHO). While preclinical studies help to paint a picture of how CBD works in models of inflammation, pain, and rheumatism, high-quality clinical trials are required to assess if the cannabinoid may help in the real world.
Greg Gerdeman says that future studies “need to include research with patient populations who are already using cannabis and are seeking it. And the research structure—physicians and scientists—need to be less shackled by policy so that they can research with this population”.
In conclusion, CBD might just be a new treatment option for those suffering from rheumatism. While studies haven’t been as conclusive yet, scientists are still exploring its potential benefits. It’s important to note that before trying any new treatments or products you should always consult with your doctor or healthcare practitioner first. Stay safe out there!