Medical Marijuana for Neuropathy Pain –
What to do when traditional medications don’t work
Neuropathy is when nerves, specifically peripheral nerves that go from the spinal cord to an area of your body, are damaged causing a burning, tingling, numb, or painful sensation. There are many causes of neuropathy but commonly are a result of damage of the nerves from high sugar levels in diabetes or from cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation. Other people suffer neuropathies from nerves being compressed such as with carpal tunnel or spinal stenosis.
For those who are looking for a natural treatment option or for those who traditional medications have failed, there are options. Some cannabinoids found in medical marijuana inhibit the transmission of pain by binding pain receptors found in the peripheral nerves. Other cannabinoids inhibit the production of inflammatory cytokines. Together the cannabinoids work synergistically to reduce pain, inflammation, cramping, and stiffness from neuropathy.
Studies of patients with refractory neuropathic pain have found that cannabis demonstrated a significant reduction in pain. Most studies looked at inhaled cannabis, however, with the legalization of medical marijuana in many states other forms such as tinctures and topical creams can be a beneficial adjunct treatment for an often debilitating condition. As with any medication, it is important to know your treatment options, risks, and benefits. The medical marijuana doctors at Cannabis Care Consultants will review your medications and discuss your condition to determine if medical marijuana may work for you.
Capsaicin, the component of cayenne pepper that makes it spice, has been used in topical creams to provide pain relief by decreasing the intensity of pain signals. Some studies have shown a slight benefit of massage with essential oils in reducing neuropathic pain. Massage as well as exercise and warm bath have been suggested to reduce pain from neuropathy by increasing blood flow to the affected areas.
A newer promising therapy is laser therapy which uses various wavelengths of light to increase circulation thereby reducing pain and swelling. This FDA approved therapy is often provided by chiropractic specialists. Dr. Jason Yusavage has been providing Summus Class VI laser treatments for over three years and treated many patients successfully with laser therapy. Dr. Yusavage explains, “Summus Medical’s Class 4 Laser shines safe red and infrared laser light over your damaged nerves and help them recover and repair. Laser therapy treatments are non-invasive and safe, and there really are no side effects.”
Ask anyone suffering from neuropathy, it hurts. Whether burning, pins and needles, cramping, numbness, or weakness, neuropathy symptoms can be extremely difficult to treat. Often traditional pharmaceutical medications do not provide adequate relief. Many alternative treatments such as vitamins, exercise, and blood sugar control focus on preventing the damage, but do not treat the pain. Both medical marijuana and K Laser have been shown to be effective and approved options. Both have a good safety profile and might be worth checking out if you have a provider near you.
If you are fortunate enough to live in a state with legalized medical marijuana, this might be your best path to relief. If you live in Pennsylvania, the knowledgeable doctors at Cannabis Care Consultants can help you get your medical card and guide you on your journey to wellness.
 Medical marijuana is approved in many states for the treatment of neuropathy and Laser is FDA approved for treatment of neuropathy.
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