Quotes on Cannabis and Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, or Other Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

Adi Lahat, MD, Doctor at the Institute of Gastroenterology and Liver Diseases, Chaim Sheba Medical Center (Israel):

“In the present preliminary prospective study, we have found that treatment with inhaled cannabis improves quality of life in patients with long-standing CD [Crohn’s disease] and UC [ulcerative colitis]. Treatment was also shown to cause a statistically significant rise in patients’ weight after 3 months of treatment, and improvement in clinical disease activity index in patients with CD…

Moreover, the data demonstrated a statistically significant improvement in almost all aspects of patients’ daily life. After 3 months’ treatment with inhaled cannabis, patients stated an improvement in their health status, their ability to perform daily activities and their ability to maintain social life. Patients reported a statistically significant physical pain reduction during treatment, as well as improvement in mental distress

None of our patients complained of any side effect that disturbed their working ability. In fact, as was shown in the results, there was a statistically significant improvement in patients’ ability to work after treatment.”

Jan. 2012 Digestion article, “Impact of Cannabis Treatment on the Quality of Life, Weight, and Clinical Disease Activity in Inflammatory Bowel Disease Patients: A Pilot Prospective Study”

Simon Lal, MD, PhD, Gastroenterologist at Spire Manchester Hospital and Spire Manchester Clinic Hale (England):

“Patients with UC [ulcerative colitis], in particular, reported using cannabis to improve diarrhoeal symptoms, and, again, this perceived benefit has received mechanistic support from studies that suggest that cannabinoids inhibit intestinal secretory responses… It is equally plausible to speculate that patients perceived benefit from using cannabis to reduce pain and/or diarrhoea because the drug has a direct anti-inflammatory effect on intestinal tissue… As in other diseases, a significant proportion of both UC and CD patients reported using cannabis to enhance appetite, and the drug’s orexigenic properties are well-recognized, with many individuals commonly reporting appetite stimulation or ‘the munchies’ after use.”

Oct. 23, 2011 European Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology article, “Cannabis Use amongst Patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease”

Timna Naftali, MD, Specialist in Gastroenterology at Meir Hospital and Kupat Holim Clinic (Israel):

“Of the 30 patients [with Crohn’s Disease] 21 improved significantly after treatment with cannabis

The mean number of bowel movements decreased from eight to five a day and the need for other drugs was significantly reduced… the number of patients requiring steroid treatment was reduced from 26 to 4. Fifteen of the patients had 19 surgeries during an average period of 9 years before cannabis use, but only 2 required surgery during an average period of 3 years of cannabis use…

The observed beneficial effect in this study may be due to the anti-inflammatory properties of cannabis, but additional effects of cannabinoids may also play a role. Cannabinoids influence gastrointestinal motility and, in particular, have an anti-diarrheal effect…”

Aug. 2011 Israel Medical Association Journal article titled “Treatment of Crohn’s Disease with Cannabis: An Observational Study”

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