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Significant pain relief thanks to medicinal cannabis | Rheumatism patient (44): “I …

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Significant pain relief thanks to medicinal cannabis

Rheumatism patient (44): “I can even be physically active again”

At the age of 30, Gabi from Munich was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis – a rheumatic disease that occurs in connection with psoriasis. Painful joint inflammation severely restricts you in everyday life, but strong painkillers do not bring about the desired relief of your symptoms. Until she stumbled upon the possibility of medical cannabis treatment. In an interview, the 44-year-old explains why cannabis therapy has not only helped her with her joint pain – and what she wishes for patients with similar symptoms.

Frankfurt am Main/München, 10. August 2022 – Getting out of bed in a buoyant mood, starting the day actively – for Gabi it was just wishful thinking for a long time. “In the morning it often took a whole hour before I could move properly,” she says. She knows the so-called “morning stiffness” all too well: a typical symptom of joint diseases such as rheumatism or arthritis, which usually occurs after a night’s sleep. The IT specialist has been struggling with such physical ailments for more than 14 years and has a long path of treatment behind her.

Physical limitations in daily life

Psoriatic arthritis can occur at any age, but most cases occur between the ages of 35 and 55. Women are affected as often as men. The chronic disease is characterized primarily by relapsing periods with severe joint inflammation1 – and the associated pain: “My pain used to be an 8, sometimes 9 on a scale of 1 to 10,” remembers Gabi. “It was really unbearable.” Especially the small joints, for example in the fingers, are often inflamed and swollen with arthritis and are difficult to move. In addition to the joints, tendon sheaths and their attachments to the bone can also be inflamed.1

As early as 2012, Gabi faced the therapeutic “final stage”, the number of remaining treatment options continued to shrink. Even taking opioids could hardly change anything about her situation: “The side effects were massive, but unfortunately the positive effects were not.”

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Multimorbidity: Particular challenges for medical treatment

In addition to psoriatic arthritis, Gabi also suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and Crohn’s disease, a chronic inflammatory bowel disease. “I always had stomach problems when I was young. In 2012, I finally got the correct diagnosis,” she reports. “For a long time I could hardly eat during the day because of the painful flare-ups, and at some point I became underweight.” Stomach cramps and diarrhea made her afraid of every meal. “It no longer had anything to do with enjoyment.”

A simultaneous presence of several chronic diseases is referred to in medicine as multimorbidity. A particular challenge in treatment, explains Dr. medical Amira Katharina Shenar, practicing doctor from Saarbrücken: “In the case of multimorbid patients, it must always be kept in mind that the use of drugs from different classes, such as painkillers and psychotropic drugs, can lead to significant interactions.” Gabi can do this from experience say: “Especially with my intestinal disease, strong painkillers have never been well tolerated.”

Cannabis in medicine: therapeutic range for alleviating various symptoms

As part of a scientific study from Great Britain, the effectiveness and safety of a cannabis-based drug in pain therapy for rheumatoid arthritis were examined. Compared to the placebo group, taking the cannabis preparation was able to lead to a significant reduction in pain both during movement and at rest. In addition, an equally significant improvement in sleep, including sleep quality, was observed. medical Lisa Schmidberg, medical director at Algea Care, the nation’s leading platform for telemedically supported and evidence-based medical treatment with medical cannabis, is not only convinced of the pain-relieving effect of the medicinal plant: “Thanks to the now more than 100 different preparations from the pharmacy, cannabis therapy is ideal to the individual needs of patients. The therapeutic spectrum is enormous, and the complaints that can be treated are very numerous. We regularly see great therapeutic successes with cannabis in the case of protracted illnesses.”

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This was exactly a new experience for Gabi: “What I experienced for the first time in this form within the framework of cannabis therapy was a holistic view and treatment of my complaints. The individual preparations could be precisely tailored to my various symptoms and have never negatively influenced each other. Gradually I was able to reduce chemical medication, sometimes even stop it altogether.”

Increase in quality of life through a variety of treatment successes

Gabi takes two different types of medicinal cannabis flowers twice a day using a medicinal vaporizer. She copes with this form of administration without any problems: “Despite the restricted mobility in my hands, the intake is really feasible for me.” medication plan. The quality of her sleep has also improved significantly as a result: “I fall asleep faster, rarely wake up at night and am much more rested the next morning.”

Not only the recovery, but also the movement has taken on a completely different quality for Gabi: “I can even be active in sports again, move better – that gives me back so much quality of life.” Above all, the pain reduction is the greatest for her Success: “Since I’ve been taking medicinal cannabis on a regular basis, the pain has reduced significantly and is now at most 2 to 3 out of 10 possible points.”

Gabi would like to see more openness in society for other patients: “There are so many people like me who have been desperately looking for suitable treatment for their symptoms for a long time. Medicinal cannabis can be a great therapeutic option for many patients. More tolerance is definitely needed here!”

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Credits

1 German Rheumatism League, https://www.rheuma-liga.de/rheuma/medizinsbilder/psoriasis-arthritis, retrieved on July 13, 2022.

2 Blake, D. R., Robson, P., Ho, M., Jubb, R. W., & McCabe, C. S. (2006). Preliminary assessment of the efficacy, tolerability and safety of a cannabis-based medicine (Sativex) in the treatment of pain caused by rheumatoid arthritis. Rheumatology (Oxford, England), 45(1), 50–52.

Algea Care GmbH
Bethmannstraße 8
60311 Frankfurt am Main
 https://www.algeacare.com 
Über Algea Care
Algea Care ist die bundesweit erste und führende Plattform für die telemedizinisch unterstützte und evidenzbasierte, ärztliche Behandlung mit medizinischem Cannabis. In Folge der in 2017 zugelassenen medizinischen Nutzung von Cannabis hat sich das 2020 in Frankfurt gegründete Unternehmen auch als wegweisender Pionier in der ärztlichen Behandlung mit spezifisch geeigneten Bestandteilen der Hanfpflanze wie zum Beispiel Cannabidiol (CBD) entwickelt. Das Angebot von Algea Care richtet sich an Patient:innen, deren herkömmliche Therapien bisher nicht erfolgreich waren und die zur Behandlung ihrer chronischen Erkrankungen und Beschwerden (z. B. chronische Schmerzen, Multiple Sklerose, Epilepsie, Morbus Crohn, Depressionen, ADHS, Schlafstörungen) nun auch auf natürliche Arzneimittel wie Cannabis setzen. Dabei stehen die Patient:innen und die nachhaltige Verbesserung ihrer Lebensqualität im Mittelpunkt des gesamten Angebots.

Patients can register quickly and easily via the website www.algeacare.com and – after a careful medical examination of the patient’s documents – request a doctor’s appointment in one of the nationwide therapy centers. There, specially trained doctors who specialize in cannabis therapy and other natural medicines advise and treat you. After an initial appointment in one of the therapy centers, follow-up appointments can be conveniently made via video consultation, provided this is medically justifiable. Using state-of-the-art telemedical technology, Algea Care enables patients to have a comprehensive full service: starting with booking appointments, taking medical history and therapy support, right through to support with questions about medication and other accompanying topics, experts are on hand to provide patients with comprehensive support.

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