Cannabis Induces a Clinical Response in Patients with Crohn’s Disease: A Prospective Placebo-Controlled Study
Timna Naftali1, Lihi Bar-Lev Schleider2, Iris Dotan3, Ephraim Philip Lansky4, Fabiana Sklerovsky Benjaminov1, and Fred Meir Konikoff1
1Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Meir Medical Center and Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Kfar Saba; 2Tikun Olam for Promotion of Medical Cannabis, Tel Aviv; 3IBD Center, Department of Gastroenterology, Sourasky Medical Center, Tel Aviv; and 4Laboratory of Applied Metabolomics and Pharmacognosy, Institute of Evolution, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel.
Dr. Naftali and a team of researchers used Tikun Olam’s Erez strain to produce dramatic results in the world’s first randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind study. 45% of Crohn’s patients achieving “complete remission” and 90% reported a significant reduction of Crohn’s Disease symptoms with no side effects.
The severity of the disease was measured by a valid and reliable scale for testing the disease severity (Crohn’s Disease Activity Index – CDAI) determined by parameters such as pain, blood in stool, number of bowel movements, etc. The higher the score, the more severe the disease. Only patients with a moderate to severe disease (CDAI of 200 points or more) were recruited for the study.
STUDY POPULATION: 21 patients with Crohn’s Disease (13 males, mean age 40).
STUDY PRODUCT: Erez rolls VS placebo.
• No patient stopped treatment during the 8 weeks of follow-up.
• Overall improvement – Complete remission (score of 150 points and below in CDAI) was achieved by 5 of 11 subjects in the cannabis group (45%) and 1 in 10 in the placebo group (10%).
• A clinical response (considered to have a decrease in CDAI score of over 100 points) was observed among 10 of 11 subjects in the cannabis group (91%); Decreased from a mean of 330 to a mean of 152. Clinical response among the control group was seen in 4 out of 10 subjects (40%); The average score of the control group was 373 and improved to 306. It is important to note that a CDAI score of 306 or higher indicates a very active disease.
• Decreased drug use – Three patients in the cannabis group were weaned from steroid dependency.
• Significant improvement in appetite and sleep– Subjects who received cannabis reported a significant improvement in appetite and sleep compared with placebo patients.
• No significant side effects were observed.