Efficacy of Medical Cannabis for the Treatment of Dystonia: Saar Anis, MD

The neurologist and movement disorders specialist at Sheba Tel-HaShomer Medical Center in Israel outlined the small, retrospective study, shedding light on its findings.

“I can say that the results were pretty good because more than 50% of patients reported, subjectively of course, that they gained satisfactory [improvement with] using cannabis on the dystonia itself. More than 85% of those patients reported improvement in the pain related to dystonia—which is pretty amazing—and also, around 60% of those 23 patients reported improvement in their quality of life during the use of cannabis.”
 

The International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society (MDS) Virtual Congress 2021, September 17-22, featured a presentation on data from a retrospective study evaluating the effect of medical cannabis (MC) on patients with dystonia. 

Saar Anis, MD, lead author of the study, sat down with NeurologyLive to discuss its key findings, which concluded that smoking MC was significantly more efficacious than consuming MC via cannabis oil extract. Anis, who is a neurologist and movement disorders specialist at the Movement Disorders Institute in the neurology department at Sheba Tel-HaShomer Medical Center in Israel, noted the study included a total of 23 patients with dystonia of varying etiologies. 

Patients had a mean age of 52.7 years and had been using MC for an average of 2.5 years, which according to Anis, is a longer period of time for patients to be taking a medication for dystonia. The study also found that tetrahydrocannabinol-rich products were better in treating dystonia and associated pain, when compared to cannabidiol-rich products—something Anis noted was surprising. 

For more coverage of MDS 2021, click here

REFERENCE
Anis S, Faust-Socher D, Sverdlov D, Hezi N, Giladi N, Gurevich T. A real-life study of Medical Cannabis effect on adults with dystonia. Presented at MDS Congress 2021; September 17-22; Virtual. Poster 93.