Standardized cannabis in Multiple Sclerosis

Cases Journal

A Case Report by Paul Hornby & Manju Sharma

Paul Hornby –;

Manju Sharma –


A 52 year old female suffering from severe progressive multiple sclerosis was administered quantifiable amounts of standardized cannabis and monitored over the period of one year, while providing daily pain charts and records of her condition.

An average daily intake of 500 mg of Tetrahydrocannabinol as cannabis was required to achieve a desired quality of life.


Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a difficult disease both to diagnose and to treat. Diagnosis often requires multiple visits to the physician and it may take years before MS is diagnosed,typed and treated.

There is no cure for MS. Treatment is based on powerful immune system suppressants, mainly steroids and various types of Interferon, although others may be used as well.

In addition, many types of medications including anticholinergics, antispasmodics, benzodiazepines and opiates are used to manage the muscle spasms, bladder incontinence issues and nerve pain that may be associated with MS. They do however prevent recurrence and slow progression of the illness. Prevention of MS through vitamin D supplementation is an intriguing possibility.

In the study described here we trace the cannabis use of an MS patient over the course of one year. High Pressure Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) was performed to quantify cannabis. The subject made significant improvement with better pain control, decreased muscle spasms and general quality of life. The case described here is one of many observed at the Green Cross Society of B.C.

Case presentation

The subject in this study, a 52-year-old female, is a member of the Green Cross Society which is a non-profit, organization, dedicated to supplying quality controlled, standardized cannabis to its qualified members. The participant involved in this year-long study was chosen primarily because she had an attentive, full-time, caregiver, who had tracked her illness since its beginning in the late 1970’s. It was the caregiver that first noticed that cannabis was beneficial in relieving her symptoms. This however, was sometime after the disease was diagnosed.

Initially she was subjected to a 10-day regimen of ACTH, plus various muscle relaxants and anxiolytics. Intermittent ACTH treatment occurred until 1985 when Magnetic Resonance Imaging confirmed her diagnosis with MS. She then began daily injections of Copaxone, which gave benefits including reduction of muscle spasms and a degree of pain management. In addition, she would also smoke cannabis to further alleviate symptoms.

Initial symptoms had included numbness of the right side of the lip, and a depressed gag reflex that made swallowing difficult. These symptoms had been present for a decade prior to the suspicion and diagnosis of MS. In 1983, she began experiencing extreme pain in her lower lumbar region that radiated to her left foot, affecting her ability to walk. When she first came to the Society in 2007, she complained of chronic pain, tremor, difficulty in walking and a severe constant pain in her left foot.

Through the Green Cross Society, the subject received advice on the best cannabis strain selection for her symptoms plus options on means of administration and dosage regimens. For the following year she ingested cannabis that had been tested for concentrations of the most abundant cannabinoids including Delta-9 Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), Cannabidiol (CBD) and Cannabinol (CBN).

Her caregiver provided daily (via email) pain charts, plus ingested medications, and a description of the subject’s general well being throughout the study.

For the full report ms-paper



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