Medical Cannabis and Parkinson’s Disease

Today we’d like to share with you a CDA’s patient Parkinson’s case study.

Patient’s Condition and symptoms:

Shirley Maclean (not her real name) suffers from Chronic pain from Parkinson’s spasms and dyskinesia. She also has injuries related to falls.

Her Parkinson’s has a significant effect on her ability to do many activities, including personal hygiene, and she has had an increase in falls and injuries.

Other symptoms include insomnia and irregular bowel motions (from constipation to diarrhoea). Mrs PD has also previously had deep brain stimulation which led to chronic headaches. She trialled multiple medications in past that caused significant side effects including Madopar, Sifrol, Artane, and she’s currently taking Amantadine. Mrs PD also trialled treatments, including Acupuncture, counselling, occupational therapy, balance classes. She was prescribed Opioids for her chronic pain which caused abdominal cramps and constipation.

She originally sourced illegal Cannabis and had promising benefits, but she was concerned about legal implications and reliability.

She was referred to CDA by her GP and Neurologist, who were both aware and supportive of Medical Cannabis treatment.

Medical Cannabis Treatment:

She contacted CDA and was consulted and approved for regular CBD and as required THC oil.

The CBD oil offered small improvement in mood and sleep but had little change in her pain, so it was discontinued. The THC oil provided a significant reduction in pain, from headaches and Parkinson’s, and improvement in sleep. There were no side effects from the THC, which is great. However, her dyskinesia and Parkinson’s continues to progress. We have however had patients take THC for their Parkinson’s and found improvement in their movement, but that doesn’t always happen. It takes a slow THC titration to gradually increase to see if there’s any positive effects regarding pain and Parkinson’s. Mrs PD continues the THC Cannabis medication for her Parkinson’s pain and headaches.

A study published in the National Centre for Biotechnology (USA), researched Medical Cannabis as a treatment for motor and non-motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. In this study, 22 patients with Parkinson’s disease attended a motor disorder clinic and were given Medical Cannabis. The results were measured by using a Unified Parkinson Disease Rating Scale, visual analog scale, present pain intensity scale, Short-Form McGill Pain Questionnaire, as well as Medical Cannabis Survey National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre Questionnaire. The results showed that there was a significant improvement in tremor, sleep, and pain scores. There were also no significant adverse side effects of Medical Cannabis.

Please visit our research database for more information about Parkinson’s and Cannabis:

It’s important to note that Medical Marijuana may not work for everyone and that the potential side effects one may experience from Medical Cannabis may be:


CBD has a narrow side effect profile. Some reported side effects of Cannabidiol include dry mouth, low blood pressure, light-headedness, and drowsiness, however, these are very uncommon.

Patients with autoimmune disorders or those who suffer from a lot of allergies could have a negative response from carrier oil or capsule container. In those cases, CBD Isolate (which is 99% pure CBD) would be a better form to try CBD.

Signs of liver injury have also been reported in some patients, but this is very uncommon.

Side effects from CBD are very uncommon but they might include dry mouth, nausea or even allergy to the carrier oil in the CBD. We also look for other interactions with other medications, most commonly the P450 metabolism medications.


THC is a psychotropic Cannabinoid and the side effects include increased heart rate, dizziness, drowsiness, impaired short-term memory, dry mouth, nausea, anxiety, increased appetite and euphoria.

Disclaimer: This is not an inducement to use Medicinal Cannabis. Medical Cannabis doesn’t work for everyone, and it may not work for you. How Cannabis affects a person depends on many things, including their size, weight, age and health, dosage and tolerance, and the results can vary. Some people may experience side effects when taking Cannabinoid medication.
The information provided by CDA Clinics is for educational and informational purposes only. For medical advice, please check with your doctor and request a referral.

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