Parkinson’s patients will take part in a clinical trial to demonstrate the benefits of cannabis oil.
Increasingly, Parkinson’s patients are turning to expensive, unregulated cannabis oil and that has made Parkinson’s UK worried. This has led to the charity partnering with King’s College London and investing £2.1m in the study.
Last year, medicinal cannabis became legalised through prescription, however, it is not available to Parkinson’s patients and very few prescriptions have actually been made. Many doctors are reluctant to give patients the go-ahead over a medication they know little about.
It is hoped that the large-scale study will show that cannabis oil has powerful effects on such Parkinson’s-related psychosis symptoms like hallucinations and delusions. At the moment there are around 145,000 people in the UK with Parkinson’s and about 60% of them suffer or will suffer from psychosis to some degree.
The project which is intended to go on for three and a half years will start in early 2020.
Director of Research at Parkinson’s UK, Dr Arthur Roach, said: “There are many unanswered questions about the value of CBD for people with Parkinson’s, but this trial will help us to determine whether it can help with the debilitating symptoms of hallucinations and delusions.
“If successful, this trial could result in people with Parkinson’s being able to access a regulated medicine, rather than reverting to expensive and unregulated supplements that haven’t been monitored for their effectiveness.”