Fibromyalgia Community
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659608 tn?1318289366

Medicinal Marijuana for Fibromyalgia

Dr. Park and members:  What is your recomendation and feelings on using Medicinal Marijuana for Fibromyalgia symptoms? There are so many conflicting articles, it's hard to know the real truth, so a doctor's view point wuld be very helpful. Thanks
17 Responses
681148 tn?1437661591
It should be a last resort.  There are problems associated with the use of marijuana, even for medical purposes that aren't often reported on.  It should certainly not be the first thing any of us reaches for.  The one thing I know that happens with all marijuana is the cognitive impairment.  Think you have problems in that area now?  It's a big area of concern, so you shouldn't take this one lightly.  Naturally, your FMS must be pretty bad or you wouldn't be asking the question, so it is good that you're weighing the matter carefully.

One thing for certain that I do know is that folks you have used recreational marijuana long term have done themselves some permanent damage.  This much I have seen on live shows like the Cops type of shows when the police are commenting about a current case and the background they already know about.  Sometimes the only recreational drug being used, too, is marijuana.

I personally wouldn't use it 'til I had run out of options.  Even though I don't take the pain medications that people often take for FMS, I get the fibro fog naturally without impairment from medication.  People already judge me as if I'm on drugs when I'm not even able to take anything for pain other than Naproxen.  It makes me feel bad, because I'm not that kind of person.
659608 tn?1318289366
Thanks for your post and concern, I am researching for a friend, although I also have been told I have Fibromyalgia from my doctor. He did not do even the "spot checks", so unsure about it. I find it interesting that the marijuana can make the cognitive impairment  symptons itself, so that is very frightening. Does anyone else have any comments on this?
483733 tn?1326798446
I have found that just a small amount of marijuana when my muscle pain is really bad does relax my muscles and allows me to sleep.  I only take it as an occasional fix when I'm feeling really bad.  
659608 tn?1318289366
I am glad to hear it is helping your muscles and allows you to sleep. That was two of the concerns I was hearing. Does anyone else have thoughts on Medical Mariijuana?
Avatar universal
Furballs...I agree taking medical marijuana is a last resort. People should go right to morphine, oxy, etc, because they are so much better for people.
Another thing is that I live in Hollywood(where everything is real), and those reality "cop" shows always give you the truth(They are there to teach not entertain..right?!). I personally base all my information on the world from reality television show(it sounds like we have a lot in common). Thanks for giving people such sound advise, and keep up the highly informed good work...I am sure it will truely cause someone harm someday...

Surgie/Trudie..My mom has Cifds, and fybro..She takes 80mg oxy X 4, 30mg roxi x 6, addrell, etc..Although medical marijuana(prop 215) doesn't help with everything it has helped her. Look into the many different strain..Sativias(sp?) are good for eating, pain, anxiety and have a uplifting, energetic feeling, indicas are powerful pain killers, sleep. They also have hybrids with combinations of the two. If you are in a Medical Marijuana legal state look into it. It has helped my mother(she is/was(to ill to practice) a Doctor OB gyn, conservative evangelical Christan, and is now very pro-medical marijuana).

PS I signed up just for the three of you..
659608 tn?1318289366
Thanks Vonwolf, It  sometimes takes courage to express concerns on everything, and I feel its important to hear all sides. Then each one can make the decision best for them.
Avatar universal
I too, agree that it should be the last result.
I have a friend who developed Epilepsy becuase of marijuna.
Pain meds have a way of inhibitation...after taking it for long term, one develops resistance to it.

I have both FMS and ME/CFS, I do stretching whenever I am ab le.  It does relax the muscle a bit.  I also take muscle relaxant for pain when pain gets excruciating.  Otherwise, I tolerate it as much as I could.

Tread your day gently.

Avatar universal
Actually Kitonthemoon(it was aimed at fuzzyballsmom)...but the first paragraph was sarcasm(come on someones opinion of cannabis(or anything) from watching "COPS"!!, a person might as well make life changing decisions from watching "The Simpsons"..I work in the Film biz(I am an actor and a regular on a TV series), and I know how reality shows are edited..They are for entrainment ONLY!)..Marajuana may not be the first thing people try when the disease starts, but to go from T3(Tylenol w/ codeine) or motrin to morphine or fentinyal is a huge leap, and while I believe that a person who's quality of life is low because of constant pain should be allowed to take as strong a narcotic as will help, and be able to do it with no stigma attached. I believe that although physical addiction will most likely become part of the patients life if they do under supervision then the possibility of psychological addiction will be low, and its the psychological addiction that is the killer, physical addiction is painful, but it doesn't cause the harm that psychological does...
Marijuana does not cause brain damage. There is no evidence of it causing any long term problems(maybe it is as bad as smoking a cigarette, but smoking cannabis is only one way of taking it..vaporizing, as butter[cannabutter'], eating it, etc.). The people that believe that are still caught up in 1960's-70's anti-drug propaganda..
Marijuana tolerance has only been shown in people who smoke or take it for very long periods, and are constantly using it.

By the way I have tried pot, and it makes me ill..but if it works for someone else then I believe they are better using that then powerful narcotics..
681148 tn?1437661591
Actually, I do know someone who use medical marijuana on occasion.  She only uses it when she feels she really has to.  And, no I don't reach for the legal narcotics either.  In fact, I get really sick on all of it.  My doctors can't get me to take the legal stuff that you were being so sarcastic with me about.  You clearly didn't read my last paragraph at all when I stated that I don't reach for this stuff myself.  The reason I don't is because it makes me feel very sick.  Also, you didn't even take notice to the fact that I stated I was already foggy naturally.  So, if I left out the part that the "legal" stuff makes me sick shoot me some more with your sarcasm.

I think I might have been misunderstood.  I am not against the use of medical marijuana at all, and I don't base my decisions on everything I see on TV.  But, I did hear the cops talking about the negative effects of marijuana, especially the kind that is used illegally, because it often has other chemicals in it.  Some of the chemicals are from the defoliating chemicals used in pot busting stings.  Some of the chemicals are from who knows what.  Now, this makes sense with what I understand about the illegal stuff, since it's true of all of the black market illegal drugs.  I really don't think sarcasm is appropriate on this forum.  Everyone is entitled to their opinions, but please be civil towards other people.  Also, I do feel that since I was misunderstood that the criticism is inappropriate.  Really, if saying that it shouldn't be the first thing is wrong, then it seems like I'm being told that it is wrong to say anything at all.  I wasn't being inappropriate with anyone, so I don't feel it is justified to be snotty with me.

I believe kitonthemoon has some valuable insite from a personal experience of someone close.  I also believe that  Sugie1938 is just asking for information from all points of view to weigh the information carefully before making a decision.
Avatar universal
Do you really think medical marijuana is MORE harmful than popping pills? OMG... PLEASE...it grows naturally...a plant for a purpose put on earth by GOD. It was made illegal by the government because they had alcohol to control.  It was NEVER proven that it was detrimental to our body, mind, or spirit. On the contrary...it has proven to expand the imagination, numb pain and relax muscles and calm nerves. The medical experts that claim marijuana is "addictive" and kills brain cells...they work for the FDA...they get paid to scare people. Alcohol...KILLS (life AND brain cells)...think before you toast with that next bottle of beer, wine, booze.
There are SO MANY "legal" drugs out there that are killing people...not brain cells. But, that must be okay because they are "LEGAL". I am appauled and MAD as hell that people that have never smoked marijuana, or have tried it once or twice in their lifetime, can say how bad it is for people.  I have fibro, RA, CFS, PTSD, anxiety...the list goes on. When my pain gets too much, I'll take a hit of marijuana...and it helps.  It is IMPORTANT to REALIZE that there is a HUGE difference between "Pot heads" and "Pot users". Pot heads will sit and smoke an entire joint in one setting. Pot users will take a puff and wait for 10 minutes...allowing the "drug" to work. One does NOT need anymore than one puff! I once was a teenager...imagine that (LOL) and I smoked alot of pot. 38 years later, I rarely partake except when my pain is up. I don't take it for entertainment, because I have Sjogrens and it dries my eyes and mouth too much (a major side effect of pot) and I tend to get paranoid.  
The government is set out to scare people about pot.  In reality...if the gov would decriminalize and put on shelves...next to the Vodka, our country would be out of debt in a year and the Cartel would be scurrying around to get a new game plan. The war on drugs should be focused on HEROIN, COCAINE, and prescribed drugs that are physically addictive (Vicodin, Morphine, Xanax, Codiene,...), the list IS TRULY endless.
If I had MS...I would have bees sting me repeatedly , everyday...SERIOUSLY. They release a chemical that interacts with the nervous system that has proven to be beneficial with those with MS...and BEES are GODs creatures.
I'm sorry if I offended anyone...but please...don't judge and don't assume that if a doctor can't give it to you...its bad. Aloe Vera, Rosemary, Cinnimon, certain barks of trees, many roots to plants, extracts of plants, insects, animals, minerals....look at the tiny list of Gods creations that ALL have medicinal values! You kow there are MANY MANY MANY more!
I'm sure, even poisen ivy has its purpose, as does mosquitos, earwigs, ants, spiders, snakes...I am SO glad to be a human that appreciates nature.
Okay...I am done with my rant.
681148 tn?1437661591
Gee, I'm so sorry I opened my trap!  I only think it's wise to consider all solutions before taking the stuff!  And, no, I don't get all my information just from watching some stupid TV show.  I do know someone who uses the mmj for a different kind of pain disorder.  The mmj strains are more likely to make someone who just wants to get high to have a lousy headache, since the natural strains aren't propogated with just the highest biochemicals that make people high.

That said, people should stop arguing with me as if I'm saying to take the pain stuff from the doctor.  Like I'm someone advocating for the FDA or Big Pharma.  I'm not.  I'm not able to take that stuff myself.  Plus, I'm not willing to, even though I have terrible pain from this illness, too.  I also agree that the opiates and such are sometimes handed out a little too easily by some doctors.  And, as bad as this pain is, I'm not willing to have to end up going to some awful pain management clinic or some methadone clinic to break the addiction cycle that this stuff causes.  Because the truth is, the legal stuff causes just as many problems as the street stuff.  The only lesser evil of the stuff taken legally is that when taken the way the doctor prescribes it, rather than taking more of it, there is less likely to be some other substance added to it that the illegal drug pushers add to it.

I'm even very careful about how much NSAIDS I take.  I take some Naproxen occasionally, but less than what is prescribed, because I have to watch out for those rebound headaches.  I also have to deal with GERD and gastritis.  I don't need to compound those problems when we know that NSAIDS can cause.  Plus, anyone dealing with a chronic kidney issue shouldn't even take this stuff occasionally.  I'm allergic to Tylenol, plus taking too much of that stuff is terrible for you because it's toxic to the liver.  I was also told that the legal narcotic pain medications that many have to take because they really do have tremendous pain is just as bad for the stomach as the NSAIDS are.

People, I'm not here to argue.  I was only answering a question based on some information I had gotten.  The truth is, the street marijuana is different than the stuff meant to be doled out from a mmj clinic.  And, the truth is that I'm not against mmj when nothing else works.  And, the truth is I was only saying to weigh out all the information before doing something.  So stop jumping down my throat already.  This argument is closed.
483733 tn?1326798446
I'm also an advocate for the use of marijuana for medical reasons.  I also just take a puff or two when my pain is really bad.  My son uses it to control his ulcerative colitis as he has no appetite without it.  On the other hand I have a brother who is a pothead and uses it as self-medication (much like people use alcohol) to treat his depression.

It helps when used appropriately and just as humans abuse other drugs (alcohol being the biggest), they will abuse marijuana too.  This doesn't mean it should not be used.

I think it is good to debate these things.  If we don't talk about it then the politicians have no basis for making decisions.  Police are trained to treat it as bad for us because they need to believe that to do their jobs.  They are not the judges.  With proper controls I think it makes so much sense to legalize it for so many reasons - reduce the cost of policing, increase tax revenues for government, improved crime prevention on the truly evil areas, and to allow people to have access to something that helps.  It will be interesting to see what the leaders in our countries do with this in the coming years.
1530171 tn?1448129593
Hey Everyone.

Just to set the record straight.
  Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the major active component of Marijuana, induces the activation of  the JNK gene.
    Molecular Pharmacology. 2000 Oct;58(4):814-20.
The CB(1) cannabinoid receptor is coupled to the activation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase.

For the ones not familiar with the JNK gene, you should know that when this gene remains activated over prolonged time, it WILL cause serious chronic disease like Alzheimer's, Anxiety, Depression, Bipolar, Diabetes,Parkinson's, Cancer, FMS and many more!
We all have this gene. There are many causative factors that activate this gene.
Please do a search for this. (Stress, Deficiencies, Smoking, Heavy metals, Inflammation, toxins..).
Unfortunately, the majority of drugs prescribed for the above conditions -Amphetamines Including ADHD medications , Opiates including pain medications , antidepressants, Methamphetamines, Antibiotics - will  all induce the activation of the JNK gene. Speed, Marijuana and most other street drugs will do the same.

My a suggestion is that you take the time to research and study the JNK  gene,  the activators  -specially medications -  and the possibly serious  implication(s) with your condition(s).
There are over 14000 ( not a typo ) studies on the JNK gene.
However, do not be surprised if your Doctor is not familiar with this research.
If he finished medical school before 2003, there's  good chance, he/she isn't up with all this, as it is fairly recent.
Should any members like to know more about this, and a natural  holistic approach  to remedy the JNK prolonged activation (besides removal of causative factors- if and when possible) please post at the Alternative Therapies, including a brief description of your
situation. Also there's an alternative to pain meds, that may actually work better,
and without the side effects.
  Blessings to all,

Avatar universal
The active ingredient in cannabis is THC. It's some of the other chemicals in the leaf, dishonest dealers who add other stuff, and the chemicals created by burning the leaf that cause problems. Hmm. Sounds a lot like tobacco…

I am interested in seeing if medical cannabis, with carefully titrated amounts of THC can assist my pain with less opioids. My case is complicated with a deformed knee that cannot be surgically helped while braces add to overall fatigue and skin sensitivity. I don't think, from the little I've read so far, that oral ingestion of food products or pills will increase fibrofog. And I also get sick from MJ smoke. ()
1069644 tn?1276928863
I have taken every narcotic imaginable! My son who is a medical marijuana patient (anxiety and gastro issues) begged me to try it. It took me 5 years of taking percs, morphine, fentanyl patch, etc... I finally gave in and tried it (I was terrified). He suggested an indica strain as the sativa can cause worsening of anxiety. I took two small hits one night and can tell you I slept better than I ever could on ambien and lunesta! My pain was less as well. I am still not 100% comfortable with it so I do it only when I get to my breaking point.

I did find one other use that is a miracle for me... Marijuana infused Shea butter cream. You don't get the funny high feeling and it relieves the muscle ache enough to where I'm not in tears everyday. Just rub a small amount on affected muscles.  As with most things used, some days it works better than others but it does help. My 84 year old grandmother swears by it and uses it daily lol. Bless her heart. Good luck everyone. I'm all for anything that will bring relief!
Avatar universal
I came to this site to specifically look for the cannabis strains that work best for fibro and I see that info in your post. I totally agree with you regarding your sarcasm, and found it humorous.

I am in a medical mj state and just had a doctor sign my papers. It should take about three weeks to get my card. I am not a previous mj user; I am 64 yrs old and was forced to retire from teaching (even volunteering) due to my post interferon tx and/or fibromyalgia and/or polymyalgia rheumatica issues. I write all of the "and/or's" because no doctor has been able to figure it out. I've also had a few spine injections (cervical and lumbar facet blocks) as my old spine has many flaws, but do they cause the head to toe pain? We just don't know. Oh yes, opiates and steroids are just great for ones well-being, far more healthier than cannibis, and they don't mess up your thinking at all (sarcasm)!  So my venture into sorting out all of these many strains of cannibis begins. Your take on indicas and sativas is what I have heard elsewhere, now to find a grower. The doctors don't give any information on that at all, mine only strongly suggested I use a vaporizer, food, etc. rather than smoke it. Even in a legal state it is not so easy to find the right stuff. Thanks for your input and if you have more information to help me in finding my best mj meds, feel free to contact me. Thank you.
937868 tn?1570328281
I had tried it for medical reasons, I suffer fibromyalgia, RLS, hashimoto syndrome, Epsen Barren syndrome ,sleep apnea, OCD, depresion, gotier and acid reflux and anxiety, I can tell you that my problems are so complex that with the normal medications from doctors I had NOT felt any better for the last 15 years, and some of those meds had sent me to the emergency room and hospitalizations several times...I was agains using it and really had a big strugle inside me but after triying it for several times I CAN tell you that I wish I did it early in my life, I had never felt so much calm, relax, out of pain, healthy, and able to enjoy my life...Also I can tell you I had never somoked, got drunk or used heavy drugs in my life...and I cant wait to do this again and feel free of all my medical problems, and have somekind of normal happy life!
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