One in seven people worldwide suffers from migraines. According to The Migraine Trust, it is the third most prevalent disease in the world. And yet, very little is known about how to treat it. Those who suffer from migraines can experience episodes anywhere from two to fifteen times a month, often having to miss work or daily life because of the pain.
Migraine sufferers continue to search for solutions and many have turned to the cannabis plant, hoping for relief. An Italian study was presented at the 3rd Congress of the European Academy of Neurology (EAN) describing the effectiveness of cannabis compounds in treating migraines.
Combining the active compounds tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) and assuring a 200mg each day for three months proved effective for the research participants. Sufferers reported about 55% less pain using the THC-CBD drug.
The study, headed up by Italian researcher Maria Nicolodi, included a second phase that included migraine sufferers as well as those that suffer from cluster headaches. Those who suffered from migraines were either given the THC-CBD compound or they were given the antidepressant amitriptyline, which is often used for the treatment of migraines. Those with cluster headaches were given the same THC-CBD compound or the calcium blocker medication known as verapamil.
Though the findings only prove the compound to be slightly better than amitriptyline at reducing migraine frequency, they prove that it, again, is very effective in treating acute pain with most patients reporting an average pain lessening of 43.5%.
The THC-CBD compound is, according to the study results, an effective and worthwhile method to try to use in order to reduce migraine pain and perhaps even the frequency of migraines. But while the effectiveness is not an absolute surety for each user, a migraine sufferer has far less to lose when trying this method. Some research participants even reported fewer stomachaches and muscle pains and fewer instances of colitis while using the compound. The only downsides reported were some instances of drowsiness and inability to concentrate.
When compared to the dry mouth, fatigue, somnolence, weight gain, dizziness, nausea, constipation, sinusitis, or orthostatic hypotension that may accompany the usage of amitriptyline, the benefits of an alternative medication are clear. Relief perhaps does not need to come at so high a cost.
This is only one in a myriad of studies currently being published regarding the power and benefits of cannabinoids as an effective alternative to prescription pain medications.
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