At a rate of nearly 200 a week, people across America are being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. This chronic degenerative condition in the central nervous system can cause muscular weakness, inflammation, and even a loss of motor control in its victims, and over time they will become permanently disabled or even die from the disease.

While a horrifying disease, there is hope on the horizon in the fight against multiple sclerosis. Cannabinoid drugs have been shown in both clinical and anecdotal trials to possess the ability to reduce and relieve the symptoms from MS, namely the pain, muscle spasticity, depression and fatigue. One of the more recent studies that have been conducted was held at UC San Diego, showing cannabis’ ability to, when inhaled, greatly relieve pain and muscle spasticity. This knowledge is reinforced by another study showing that nearly half of all MS patients utilize cannabis for therapeutic purposes.

A more recent study done in 2003 reported that cannabinoids could even possess the ability to hinder the growth of Multiple Sclerosis instead of simply managing its symptoms. To quote the study: “The results of this study are important because they suggest that in addition to symptom management, … cannabis may also slow the neurodegenerative processes that ultimately lead to chronic disability in multiple sclerosis and probably other disease.”

That same year it was discovered that oral THC may be of use in the improvement of immune system function in those who are suffering from MS, with another report in 2006 showing long-term pain relief from utilizing medical cannabis as whole plant extracts.

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