Crohn’s Syndrome or Crohn’s Disease, is extremely difficult to live with, since it is an inflammatory bowel disease that can affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract, causing a wide range of symptoms. The most common symptoms are abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, weight loss, and skin problems. There are multiple factors involved, from genetics to interactions with the environment, as well as bacterial threats. Eventually, the immune system attacks the gastrointestinal tract.
IBD Patient Relief
The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America acknowledged that “IBD patients have been found to have higher levels of cannabinoid receptors in their colonic tissue.” Individual studies the foundation reference suggested that some patients with IBD report smoking marijuana to relieve IBD-related symptoms, usually those recovering from surgery and experiencing abdominal pain. Nevertheless, the Foundation could not elaborate much, as it cited a risk of smoking and marijuana’s illegal status as obstacles.
The New England Journal of Medicine released a poll question asking physicians if a senior-aged breast-cancer patient should be prescribed medicinal marijuana for pain relief. Over 75 percent voted in favor of prescribing marijuana, and most physicians who voted yes were from North America.
Placebo vs. Medical Cannabis
One study by the Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the Meir Medical Center, Tel Aviv University, stated that cannabis “induced a clinical response in patients with Crohn’s disease”, and that the results differed from a placebo-controlled study. Based on two cannabis cigarettes smoked daily, and containing 115 milligrams, the treatment reported complete remission of symptoms in 5 out of 11 subjects, and only one in the placebo group. Furthermore, a “clinical response, a decrease in CDAI score of >100” was observed in all but one of the test subjects. Other positive effects included a decrease on steroid dependency, and improved appetite and sleep.
The effects are clear and the testimonies from the medical community are deafening. In time, medicine may well endorse marijuana as a treatment for IBS and many other life-affecting conditions.