Improving walking with nabiximols: new findings
A study to assess whether nabiximols could be used to improve walking in people with MS
Last updated: 25th September 2015
Spasticity is a disabling symptom that affects more than 60% of people with MS and can have a negative impact on their quality of life.
It is often experienced alongside other symptoms, including spasms, pain, urinary tract dysfunction, and sleep disturbances.
Spasticity can be challenging to manage as the current approved drugs, such us baclofen, tizanidine, gabapentin and intrathecal baclofen or botulinum toxin, have several tolerability issues.
Spasticity is one of the major symptoms leading to trips and falls but for many people with MS, the most disabling spasticity symptoms are movement problems and reduced walking ability.
One of the treatments used for MS spasticity is nabiximols (trade name: Sativex). It is an oral spray made from two chemical extracts from the cannabis plant. A recent study at the University of Cagliari, Italy, looked at whether nabiximols had any impact on the pattern of limb movement in people with MS.
Twenty people with MS took part in the study and the researchers found that nabiximols was able to improve speed, steps per minute and stride length.
Although a larger population is needed to further confirm these results, the study suggests nabiximols could potentially be used to improve walking in people with MS.
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