London, United Kingdom: The daily administration of cannabis products is associated with symptom improvements in patients with inflammatory bowel disease, according to observational trial data published in the journal Expert Review of Gastroenterology & Hepatology.
British investigators assessed the safety and efficacy of cannabis products in 76 patients diagnosed with either Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis. The study subjects were participants in the UK Medical Cannabis Registry and each of them possessed a doctor’s authorization to consume cannabis. Study participants consumed either cannabis extracts, THC-dominant flowers, or both for a period of three months.
Authors reported: “Initiation of CBMPs [cannabis-based medicinal products] was associated with an improvement in HRQoL [health-related quality of life] in the short term, with statistically significant improvements in IBD-specific and general HRQoL outcomes at 1 and 3 months after initiating treatment. Participants who previously consumed cannabis had greater improvements in HRQoL and fewer adverse events compared to naïve individuals. These findings highlight the potential utility of CBMPs as an adjunctive therapeutic option in the short term, especially in patients who continue to experience debilitating symptoms despite maximal medical therapy.”
Longitudinal data from Israel has similarly reported that the long-term use of whole-plant cannabis is associated with both symptom improvement and the reduced use of prescription medications in patients with treatment-resistant inflammatory bowel disease.
Full text of the study, “The effect of medical cannabis on inflammatory bowel disease: Analysis from the UK Medical Cannabis Registry,” appears in Expert Review of Gastroenterology & Hepatology. Additional information on cannabis and inflammatory bowel disease is available from NORML’s publication, Clinical Applications for Cannabis & Cannabinoids.