Spasm

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Cross section of muscle tissue

A muscle spasm is a sudden, involuntary contraction of a muscle, a group of muscles, or a hollow organ such as a heart, or a similarly sudden contraction of an orifice. It most commonly refers to a muscle cramp which is often accompanied by a sudden burst of pain, but is usually harmless and ceases after a few minutes. One of the symptoms of Multiple sclerosis is muscle spasms and according to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, spasticity refers to the stiffness and involuntary muscle spasms that are indicative of the disease. It can range from mild spasticity, which may feel like tightness, to severe spasticity, which produce painful sudden movements of the extremities, typically the legs, although it can occur in any limb.[1]

Causes

Among the causes of spasms are insufficient hydration, muscle overload, and absence of electrolytes. Spasmodic muscle contraction may be due to a large number of medical conditions, including dystonia. Hypertonic muscle spasms is the state of chronic, excessive muscle tone, or tension in a resting muscle – the amount of contraction that remains when a muscle is not actively working.

Cannabis as a Treatment

In the 19th century, Queen Victoria’s physician often prescribed a cannabis tincture for her menstrual pain.[2] The effectiveness of medical cannabis in treating muscle spasms is also very well documented. Some patients find that medical cannabis is extremely helpful in alleviating uncontrollable and debilitating muscle tremors. Other patients with severe spastic conditions have reported that medical cannabis actually keeps them alive.[3]

Some patients with Tourette’s syndrome, which is a neurological disorder that has spastic-type components, report remarkable results with the use of medical cannabis.

Additional Resources

References

  1. Study: Smoking pot may ease pain, muscle spasms in people with multiple sclerosis By Ryan Jaslow, May 14, 2012 CBS News Retrieved November 09, 2014
  2. Muscle Spasms and Spasticity Eased by Cannabis Bloom Dispensary Retrieved November 09, 2014
  3. Cannabis and Muscle Spasms Medicann Retrieved November 09, 2014


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