Spasticity

Allison Kendrick, MD -  - Medical Cannabis Specialist

Compassionate Telemedicine

Allison Kendrick, MD

Medical Marijuana Doctor located in Austin, TX

More than 12 million people all over the world experience the painful muscle cramps and spasms that are the hallmark of spasticity. At Compassionate Telemedicine in Austin, Texas, internal medicine physician Allison Kendrick, MD, MA, prescribes medical marijuana for patients with spasticity. To find relief from spasticity with medical marijuana, call the office or schedule a telemedicine appointment online today.

Spasticity Q & A


What is spasticity?

Spasticity causes a range of difficult problems, from tight and stiff muscles to uncontrollable spasms that can be extremely painful. People with spasticity often experience difficulty walking, speaking, and moving. Spasticity can also be accompanied by periods of weakness in the affected muscles.

Spasticity can prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep and negatively affect your quality of life in various other ways, including daytime fatigue and limiting activity.

 

What causes spasticity?

Spasticity usually occurs as the result of damage or dysfunction in areas of your brain and spinal cord that control muscle movement. Many conditions can cause spasticity, including:

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Multiple sclerosis (MS)
  • Stroke
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)

The type of spasticity symptoms you experience depends on the location of the nerve damage and specific nerves affected. Therefore, a person with MS may have different spasticity symptoms than someone with a TBI.

 

How does medical marijuana compare with other treatments for spasticity?

Traditional spasticity treatments often include oral medications, Botox® injections, and brain surgery. However, these treatments may cause disruptive side effects, including nausea, vomiting, and headache. Other medications like benzodiazepines or muscle relaxers can cause tolerance and addiction over time.

The most common side effects of medical cannabis are drowsiness and fatigue, which some people with spasticity may find beneficial at bedtime.

 

How effective is medical marijuana for treating spasticity?

According to a study published in The Lancet, treatment with medical cannabis led to a patient-reported lessening of spasticity and pain in participants with MS. 

Medical cannabis has anti-inflammatory properties, which not only relieves pain but also slows the progression of the disease by preventing further nerve damage. Medical marijuana can also alleviate symptoms that may accompany spasticity, including anxiety, depression, and difficulty sleeping.

 

How can I get medical marijuana for spasticity?

If you’re a resident of Texas and have spasticity, you may be a candidate for low-dose THC through the Texas Compassionate Use Program. Dr. Kendrick.is one of only a few physicians who can legally prescribe low-dose THC in Texas.

Low-dose THC contains less than 0.5% THC, which is the psychoactive cannabinoid that produces a “high” feeling. In contrast, recreational cannabis may contain more than 15% THC.

Dr. Kendrick sees patients ages 12 and older via telemedicine. She carefully reviews your symptoms and medical history to determine whether medical marijuana can alleviate your spasticity symptoms.

If you or a loved one suffers from spasticity, call Compassionate Telemedicine, or schedule an appointment online today.