Cologne, Germany: Nearly four out of ten patients in the Netherlands
with a prescription for "medical-grade cannabis" (cannabis provided by
Dutch pharmacies with a standardized THC content of 10.2 percent) use it
to treat neurologic disorders such as Multiple Sclerosis and spinal cord
injuries, according to survey data published in the current issue of the
More than 100 patients with a physician's prescription to use
medicinal cannabis responded to the questionnaire. Overall, 39 percent of
respondents said they used "medical-grade cannabis" to treat neurologic
disorders. Twenty-one percent said they used cannabis to treat symptoms
related to musculoskeletal/connective tissue disorders (such as
fibromyalgia, arthritis, or migraine), and 14 percent said they used it to
treat symptoms of cancer and/or HIV/AIDS.
Sixty-four percent of respondents reported "good or excellent"
therapeutic effects from cannabis, with a greater percentage of patients
experiencing perceived benefits the longer they used cannabis. Perceived
efficacy was better among patients who inhaled cannabis versus those who
took cannabis orally, authors found.
Since 2003, Dutch patients with a doctor's prescription have been able
to purchase government-grown cannabis at licensed pharmacies. An
estimated 1,000 to 1,500 patients are believed to receive prescription
cannabis from Dutch pharmacies.
For more information, please contact either Allen St. Pierre or Paul
Armentano of NORML at (202) 483-5500. Full text of the study, "Medical
use of cannabis in the Netherlands," appears in the March issue of