Co-medication with Cannabidiol May Slow Down the Progression of Motor Neuron Disease: A Case Report
Our first case study covers a man in his early sixties who began to show signs of weakness and impaired function in his right hand. Similar symptoms including paresthesia progressed to other limbs shortly afterwards (3 weeks). Dysarthria (slurred speech) also started to manifest.
Based on these symptoms, a diagnosis of ALS was made without use of neuro imaging.
Despite being put on Riluzole and Sanopal, the mans conditioned worsened with fasciculation, muscle cramps, increased weakness, dysarthria as well as dysphagia. It wasn’t until 8 weeks later that CBD was started.
CBD isolate (99% pure) was started at a dose of 2 × 200 mg CBD/day. After 2 weeks, the patients symptoms began to subside and with a further increase in dose (2 × 300 mg CBD/day) there was further improvement.
Six weeks aіer starting CBD, complete reversal of paresthesia in the foot was observed and most of paresthesia in the right hand; only a slight weakness remained in digit 5 and 4. Dysphagia also improved, whereas dysarthria remained almost stable without significant changes. Improvement was maintained for the following 10 weeks after which a slight progression of dysarthria was observed again.
A dose increase to 2 × 400 mg CBD had no additional effect. During the following 12 months (now about eighteen months after onset) dysphagia, dysarthria and fatigue progressed; speech is actually almost lost. However, other symptoms worsened much less; the patient can still use his right hand and ride his bicycle, although muscle weakness and atrophy has slightly progressed. Other functions are maintained with no significant changes.
The anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects of CBD are the likely mediators of such an outcome in reducing disease progression and severity. The authors of the case study suggest an earlier use of CBD before a large body of neurones are lost may help delay symptom development and slow disease progression.