How Medical Marijuana Helps Treat Arnold-Chiari Malformation

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Arnold-Chiari Malformation is a condition that is characterized by structural defects in the part of the brain known as the cerebellum. This condition is known to occur when part of the skull is abnormally small or misshapen, thereby pressing on the brain and forcing it downwards.

Arnold-chiari malformation is very uncommon and according to scientists, it occurs in 1 in every 1000 births. There are three types, which all depends on the anatomy of the brain tissue that is displaced into the spinal canal, and whether developmental abnormalities of the brain or spine are present.

Chiari Malformation Type I often develop when the skull and the brain are growing and that explains why the symptoms rarely occur until late childhood or adulthood. Types II and Types III are on the other hand the pediatric forms of Chiari Malformation since they are present at birth (Congenital). The most common symptoms of Chiari Malformation include severe headaches, neck pain, dizziness, unsteady gait, poor hand coordination, numbness and tingling of the hands and feet, speech problems, vision problems as well as difficulties swallowing.

Most cases of Arnold-chiari malformation are caused by structural defects in the brain and in the spinal cord during fetal development. Moreover, it is also associated with genetics, and that explains why people with family members suffering from the condition are also likely to develop it. If left untreated, Arnold-Chiari Malformation could become a progressive disorder that could result in serious complications such as hydrocephalus, spinal bifida, tethered cord syndrome as well as syringomyelia, etc. However, the good news is that Arnold-Chiari Malformation can be treated, even though the treatment depends on several factors, including the severity of the condition as well as the characteristics and symptoms present. Pain medications may be prescribed to reduce severe headaches and pain, whereas a surgery may also be recommended to reduce pressure in the head.

There is a growing body of research that suggests that medical marijuana could be effective in the treatment of the symptoms of Arnold Chiari malformation. For instance, there are indications that medical marijuana is effective in the treatment of headaches associated with Arnold-Chiari Malformation. According to a 2017 study that was published via PMB, medical marijuana could be effective in treating different types of headaches, including headache associated with Arnold-Chiari Malformation.

There are also insinuations that medical marijuana could be effective in treating insomnia or sleep disorders, which is another common characteristic of Arnold-Chiari Malformation. The findings from a study that was published in the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis revealed that up to 71 percent of the participants reported improved sleep pattern following the use of medical marijuana. More so, the findings from another study that was published in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology on subjects with Crohn’s Disease, reported that consuming medical cannabis can result in improved sleep and appetite without any significant side effects.

Medical marijuana has also been reported to be effective in the treatment of chronic pain associated with Arnold Chiari Malformation. According to researchers, THC and CBD which are two major compounds in medical cannabis naturally influence the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). Of course, the endocannabinoid system helps in balancing many functions of the body, including pain reception. CBD and THC, therefore bind to the neuro receptors of the endocannabinoid system, thereby enabling them to manage many different kinds of pain including pain from headaches associated with Arnold-Chiari Malformation.

Several studies have revealed that medical marijuana is effective in the treatment of chronic pain. A Harvard-led review of 28 studies that was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association supported the claims that medical marijuana could be effective in treating chronic pain, including pain caused by Arnold-Chiari Malformation.

Besides, another study that was carried out at the University of Michigan in 2016 and published in the Journal of Pain revealed that medical marijuana was also effective in decreasing pain, thereby improving the quality of life in many patients, sufferers of Arnold-Chiari Malformation inclusive.

Sources:

Mayo Clinic
Web MD

Marijuana strains reported to help with Arnold-Chiari Malformation:

How To Get Medical Marijuana

If you are a resident of a legal state interested in trying medical marijuana to treat Arnold-Chiari Malformation or other medical conditions, you will first need to consult with a certified doctor in order to get a medical marijuana card. To get started, simply fill out the MMJ patient registration form, press submit and a physician or clinic representative will contact you as available.

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