Updated on December 11, 2018. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Richard Koffler, MD, Board Certified Physiatrist
Although doctors aren’t completely sure what causes chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy(CIDP), a prevailing theory is that the disease is an autoimmune disorder. Inflammation is your immune system’s response to help heal wounds or infections. However, in those with autoimmune conditions, the immune system begins attacking healthy cells, and inflammation harms the body.
Cannabis is gaining attention in the medical world for its ability to slow the progression of autoimmune disorders. This should come as a relief to those with CIDP, as medical marijuana could be used to prevent the body from attacking healthy cells and destroying them. Combined with its pain-relieving properties, cannabis allows CIDP patients to live fuller, happier and healthier lives.
Patients with CIDP struggle with a variety of symptoms because the body’s immune system has turned against healthy cells. Myelin is the insulation that protects nerve fibers. In CIDP patients, inflammation occurs at the roots of sensory, motor or autonomic nerves, destroying their fatty protective coverings.
This causes many painful and debilitating symptoms to occur, including:
For patients with chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, it’s crucial to find a treatment plan that manages the inflammation associated with the disorder. Not only will this reduce pain, but it will help slow the progression of the disease.
There is no cure for CIDP, but the most common treatments deal with its effects on the immune system. These include corticosteroids, intravenous immunoglobulin, plasma exchange and immunotherapy. However, each of these varies in effectiveness and has the potential to cause adverse side effects that could impair a patient’s health.
Doctors are finding the anti-inflammatory properties of medical marijuana could significantly boost the immune system in patients with autoimmune disorders like CIDP. The cannabinoids in marijuana mimic receptors located in our body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS), which allows them to influence many different bodily functions and leads to significant benefits.
For patients with CIDP, cannabis helps the immune system in the following ways:
The information we present shouldn’t replace the advice of a qualified professional. If you feel medical marijuana would benefit your condition, contact a local dispensary or a marijuana doctor near you. They can assess your individual concerns and offer advice based on your specific circumstances. Let MarijuanaDoctors.com connect you to quality care.
For more information about how cannabis can be used to treat Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy, check out our resources: