Cannabinoids in Multiple Sclerosis: A Neurophysiological Analysis

Publication cover image “Objectives: To investigate the action of cannabinoids on spasticity and pain in secondary progressive multiple sclerosis, by means of neurophysiological indexes.

Conclusions: The THC-CBD spray improved spasticity and pain in secondary progressive MS patients. The spray prolonged CSP duration, which appears a promising tool for assessing and monitoring the analgesic effects of THC-CBD in MS.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32632918/

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/ane.13313

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Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of Cannabinoid Oromucosal Spray Use for the Management of Spasticity in Subjects with Multiple Sclerosis.

 SpringerLink“Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a highly symptomatic disease, with a wide range of disabilities affecting many bodily functions, even in younger persons with a short disease history.

The availability of a cannabinoid oromucosal spray (Sativex) for the management of treatment-resistant MS spasticity has provided a new opportunity for many patients.

OBJECTIVE:

Our study aimed to assess the cost effectiveness of Sativex in Italian patients with treatment-resistant MS spasticity. The analysis was based on the real-world data of a large registry of Italian patients.

CONCLUSION:

The use of Sativex could improve the quality of life of patients with a reasonable incremental cost resulting as a cost-effective option for patients with MS-resistant spasticity. These results could help clinicians and decision makers to develop improved management strategies for spasticity in patients with MS, optimizing the use of available resources.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/32130684

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs40261-020-00895-6

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Cannabis use in people with multiple sclerosis and spasticity: A cross-sectional analysis.

Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders Home

“Growing evidence supports that cannabinoids relieve MS-related spasticity but little is known about cannabis use among people with MS (PwMS) and spasticity.

 

OBJECTIVE:

To characterize cannabis use among PwMS and spasticity.

METHODS:

As part of baseline data collection for a spasticity intervention trial in Oregon, PwMS and self-reported spasticity answered questions about cannabis use.

RESULTS:

54% reported ever using cannabis and 36% currently use. 79% use multiple routes of administration, 58% use at least daily. 79% find cannabis helpful for spasticity and 26% use cannabis and prescribed oral antispasticity medications.

CONCLUSIONS:

Many PwMS and spasticity use cannabis and report it helps their spasticity.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/32086163

https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S2211034820300857

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Tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol oromucosal spray in resistant multiple sclerosis spasticity: consistency of response across subgroups from the SAVANT randomized clinical trial.

 Publication Cover“To determine whether differences in disability status, spasticity severity, and spasticity duration at treatment start in patients with resistant multiple sclerosis (MS) spasticity might influence response to add-on tetrahydrocannabinol:cannabidiol (THC:CBD) oromucosal spray (nabiximols) versus further re-adjustment of optimized first-line antispasticity medication.

Methods: Using the database from the Sativex® as Add-on therapy Vs. further optimized first-line ANTispastics (SAVANT) study, this post hoc analysis evaluated spasticity severity (0-10 Numerical Rating Scale [NRS] scores) and pain severity (0-10 NRS scores) evolution from randomization (baseline) to week 12 (end of double-blind treatment) in defined subgroups: Expanded Disability Status Scale [EDSS] score subgroups (< 6 and ≥6); spasticity severity 0-10 NRS score subgroups (4 to ≤6 and >6), and spasticity duration subgroups (< 5 and ≥5 years).

Results: THC:CBD oromucosal spray (nabiximols) halved mean severity scores for spasticity and pain in all subgroups. Active treatment significantly improved mean spasticity severity scores versus placebo from week 4 onwards in both EDSS subgroups, in the severe spasticity subgroup, and in both spasticity duration subgroups. Active treatment significantly improved mean pain severity scores versus placebo in the ≥6 EDSS subgroup, in the severe spasticity subgroup and in both spasticity duration subgroups.

Conclusion: Add-on THC:CBD oromucosal spray (nabiximols) consistently relieves resistant spasticity across subgroups defined by baseline EDSS score, spasticity severity NRS score and spasticity duration. Patients with moderate resistant MS spasticity benefit numerically from treatment; patients with severe resistant spasticity achieve significant therapeutic gains. Spasticity-associated pain often improves similarly in the same subgroups.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/32065006

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00207454.2020.1730832?journalCode=ines20

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Real world experience of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) in the treatment of spasticity using tetrahydrocannabinol:cannabidiol (THC:CBD).

Image result for bmc neurology“Treatment of spasticity poses a major challenge in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) patient management.

Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC):cannabidiol (CBD) oromucosal spray (THC:CBD), approved for the treatment of spasticity in multiple sclerosis, serves as a complementary off-label treatment option in ALS-related spasticity.

The mean dose THC:CBD were 5.5 daily actuations (range < 1 to 20). Three subgroups of patients were identified: 1) high-dose daily use (≥ 7 daily actuations, 34%, n = 11), 2) low-dose daily use (< 7 daily actuations, 50%, n = 16), 3) infrequent use (< 1 daily actuation, 16%, n = 5). Overall NPS was + 4.9 (values above 0 express a positive recommendation to fellow patients). Remarkably, patients with moderate to severe spasticity (NRS ≥ 4) reported a high recommendation rate (NPS: + 29) in contrast to patients with mild spasticity (NRS < 4; NPS: - 44). For the three main domains of TSQM-9 high mean satisfaction levels were found (maximum value 100): effectiveness 70.5 (±22.3), convenience 76.6 (±23.3) and global satisfaction 75.0 (±24.7).

CONCLUSION:

THC:CBD is used in a wide dose range suggesting that the drug was applied on the basis of individual patients’ needs and preferences. Contributing to this notion, moderate to severe spasticity was associated with an elevated number of daily THC:CBD actuations and stronger recommendation rate (NPS) as compared to patients with mild spasticity. Overall, treatment satisfaction (TSQM-9) was high. The results suggest that THC:CBD may serve as a valuable addition in the spectrum of symptomatic therapy in ALS. However, prospective studies and head-to-head comparisons to other spasticity medications are of interest to further explore the effectiveness of THC:CBD in the management of spasticity, and other ALS-related symptoms.”

“Overall, patients reported outcomes as assessed by TSQM-9 revealed a high treatment satisfaction with THC:CBD. The results of our study suggest that THC:CBD may serve as an important addition to the spectrum of treatment options of spasticity in ALS.”
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Variability of Multiple Sclerosis Spasticity Symptoms in Response to THC:CBD Oromucosal Spray: Tracking Cases through Clinical Scales and Video Recordings.

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“Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory and neurodegenerative autoimmune demyelinating disease of the central nervous system. Patients exhibit heterogeneous patterns of disabling symptoms, including spasticity. In the majority of patients with MS spasticity, it and its associated symptoms contribute to disability, interfere with performance of everyday activities, and impair quality of life. Even under treatment with oral antispasticity drugs, about a third of patients continue to experience spasticity of moderate to severe intensity, underscoring the need for additional treatment options.

The efficacy of tetrahydrocannabinol: cannabidiol (THC:CBD) oromucosal spray as add-on therapy in patients with refractory MS spasticity has been demonstrated in clinical trials and observational studies.

To gain insight into patients’ response to treatment at the individual level, in-depth changes from baseline in various clinical scales and video-assessed parameters were evaluated in patients with resistant MS spasticity before and after 1 month of treatment with THC:CBD oromucosal spray. All 6 patients showed ≥20% improvement in the spasticity Numerical Rating Scale (i.e., were initial responders to treatment), but displayed individual variability in other spasticity-related parameters.

Improved Modified Ashworth Scale scores were observed in 5 cases, with a reduction of -2/-3 points in lower limb scores for 1 patient who also showed benefit in terms of a more stable gait but modest improvement in the timed 10-meter walk test (10MWT). Improvement in the 10MWT (or 25-foot walk test) was noted in 4 of the 6 cases. THC:CBD oromucosal spray also improved upper limb function as indicated by faster 9-Hole Peg Test results.”

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Sativex® as Add-on therapy Vs. further optimized first-line ANTispastics (SAVANT) in resistant multiple sclerosis spasticity: a double-blind, placebo-controlled randomised clinical trial.

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“Purpose/aim: To evaluate the efficacy of tetrahydrocannabinol [THC]:cannabidiol [CBD] oromucosal spray (Sativex®) as add-on therapy to optimized standard antispasticity treatment in patients with moderate to severe multiple sclerosis (MS) spasticity.

RESULTS:

Of 191 patients who entered Phase A, 106 were randomised in Phase B to receive add-on THC:CBD spray (n = 53) or placebo (n = 53). The proportion of clinically-relevant responders after 12 weeks (≥ 30% NRS improvement; primary efficacy endpoint) was significantly greater with THC:CBD spray than placebo (77.4 vs 32.1%; P < 0.0001). Compared with placebo, THC:CBD spray also significantly improved key secondary endpoints: changes in mean spasticity NRS (P < 0.0001), mean pain NRS (P = 0.0013), and mean modified Ashworth’s scale (P = 0.0007) scores from Phase B baseline to week 12. Adverse events, when present, were mild/moderate and without new safety concerns.

CONCLUSIONS:

Add-on THC:CBD oromucosal spray provided better and clinically relevant improvement of resistant MS spasticity compared with adjusting first-line antispasticity medication alone.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29792372

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00207454.2018.1481066

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The influence of THC:CBD oromucosal spray on driving ability in patients with multiple sclerosis-related spasticity.

Publication cover image

“Driving ability is a key function for the majority of patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) to help maintain daily interactions. Both physical and cognitive disability, as well as treatments, may affect the ability to drive. Spasticity is a common symptom associated with MS, and it may affect driving performance either directly or via the medications used to treat it.

In this article, we review the evidence relating the antispasticity medicine, Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol:cannabidiol (THC:CBD) oromucosal spray (Sativex®), and its potential impact on driving performance.

The results from THC:CBD oromucosal spray driving studies and real-world registries did not show any evidence of an increase in motor vehicle accidents associated with THC:CBD oromucosal spray. The majority of patients reported an improvement in driving ability after starting THC:CBD oromucosal spray, and it was speculated that this may be related to reduced spasticity and/or better cognitive function.

THC:CBD oromucosal spray was shown not to impair driving performance.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29761015

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/brb3.962

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Advances in the management of multiple sclerosis spasticity: recent clinical trials.

“Most patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) experience spasticity as the clinical course evolves. Associated symptoms include (often painful) spasms, urinary dysfunction and sleep disturbances. THC:CBD oromucosal spray (Sativex®) is approved for symptom improvement in adult patients with moderate to severe MS-related spasticity who have not responded adequately to other antispasticity medication and who demonstrate clinically significant improvement in spasticity-related symptoms during an initial trial of therapy.

SUMMARY:

In pivotal clinical trials of THC:CBD oromucosal spray, a meaningful proportion of patients with treatment-resistant MS spasticity achieved clinically relevant improvement with active treatment versus placebo. The utility of a 4-week trial of therapy to identify patients who respond to treatment was demonstrated in an enriched-design study.

THC:CBD oromucosal spray was well tolerated in these studies, with no evidence of effects typically associated with recreational cannabis use.

In a subsequent post approval clinical trial, THC:CBD oromucosal spray had no statistically significant effect on cognition and mood compared with placebo.

Moreover, after 50 weeks’ treatment, approximately two-thirds of patients, physicians and caregivers reported improvement from baseline in spasticity based on global impressions of change.

In phase III clinical trials, approximately one-third of MS patients with treatment-resistant spasticity had a clinically relevant and statistically significant response to THC:CBD oromucosal spray.

In addition to a reduction in spasticity, responders experienced meaningful relief from associated symptoms.

THC:CBD oromucosal spray was generally well tolerated and efficacy was maintained over the longer term.

A post-approval clinical trial indicated no effect of THC:CBD oromucosal spray on cognition or mood after 50 weeks of use.”

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25278117

http://www.thctotalhealthcare.com/category/multiple-sclerosis-ms/

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Advances in the management of multiple sclerosis spasticity: multiple sclerosis spasticity nervous pathways.

“Involvement of the endocannabinoid system in pathophysiological mechanisms responsible for spasticity has been demonstrated in animal models of MS…

Evidence indicates that the antispasticity effects of THC:CBD oromucosal spray (Sativex®) are associated with enhanced cortical long-term potentiation.

CB1 receptors, which are associated with movement, postural control, and pain and sensory perception, influence glutamatergic pathways.

THC:CBD oromucosal spray was shown to reverse motor cortex plasticity from long-term depression through long-term potentiation of synaptic transmission, thereby restoring, at least in part, effective corticospinal inputs to spinal circuits.”

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25278116

http://www.thctotalhealthcare.com/category/multiple-sclerosis-ms/

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