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Survey: Fibromyalgia Patients Report Improved Symptoms Following Cannabis Use

Rochester, MN: Fibromyalgia (FM) patients frequently use cannabis therapeutically and most say that it improves their disease symptoms, according to survey data published in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings.



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Researchers affiliated with the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota surveyed 1,336 patients with fibromyalgia. Half (49.5 percent) acknowledged using cannabis following their FM diagnosis.


Ninety-nine percent of consumers reported using cannabis for pain, and 94 percent reported using it to mitigate stress, anxiety, depression, and insomnia. 


Eighty-two percent said that marijuana reduced their FM-related pain, and most respondents also rated cannabis as effective in mitigating other disease symptoms. 


In an accompanying editorial, authors acknowledged that cannabis use among FM patients is “widespread” and that most patients perceive it to have a “favorable impact on pain, stress, and sleep disturbances.” The editorial’s authors described cannabis as a “promising” option for FM patients, but cautioned, “More research is needed to determine the best doses and composition for each symptom, long-term safety, and whether people might become dependent on MC [medical cannabis] when using it to manage FM.”


Recent observational trial data from Germany and the United Kingdom reports that FM patients typically reduce their use of other prescription medications following their use of cannabis products.


Full text of the study, “A cross-sectional survey study of cannabis use for fibromyalgia symptom management,” appears in Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Additional information on the use of cannabis for FM is available from NORML’s publicationClinical Applications for Cannabis and Cannabinoids.

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