Spasticity scales may be insufficient to reflect the actual benefits of Sativex (nabiximols) treatment on spasticity symptoms in people with multiple sclerosis (MS), according to a small case series study.
The results support the need to conduct a more extensive and functional examination to clarify treatment responses and help optimize treatment decisions.
The study, “Variability of Multiple Sclerosis Spasticity Symptoms in Response to THC:CBD Oromucosal Spray: Tracking Cases through Clinical Scales and Video Recordings,” was published in the journal Case Reports in Neurology.
Spasticity is one of the most common symptoms of MS, manifesting as progressive and frequently painful muscle stiffness and involuntary muscle spasms, which have a negative effect in the patients’ quality of life.
Despite the existence of first-line anti-spasticity medications, about a third of MS patients do not respond to them and continue to have moderate-to-severe spasticity.
Sativex is an approved add-on therapy in the European Union and in other countries to treat symptoms of moderate or severe spasticity resistant to first-line anti-spastic treatments in MS patients.
Developed and commercialized by GW Pharmaceuticals, it consists of a oromucosal spray that combines two of the most common types of cannabinoids — tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD).
Data from clinical trials and clinical practice have shown that Sativex effectively eases spasticity-related symptoms in people with MS. The results were based on scores of the 0–10 spasticity Numerical Rating Scale (NRS), a validated self-reported measure of perceived severity of spasticity.
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