Qualifying Conditions for Medical Marijuana in Pennsylvania

Dystonia, also referred to as involuntary muscle contractions, is known to cause immense pain in people who have been diagnosed with Huntington’s Disease.

This is why many patients are now considering medical marijuana for Huntington’s Disease, which has been proven to dramatically reduce pain symptoms. In addition, there are also fewer, or no side effects, associated with the use of medical marijuana compared to the anti-anxiety and anti-seizure drugs commonly prescribed for patients with Huntington’s Disease.

About Huntington’s Disease (HD)

Huntington’s Disease, also known as Huntington Chorea and Huntington Chronic Progressive Hereditary Chorea, is a rare hereditary condition that occurs from a progressive brain disorder. Huntington’s Disease impacts a person’s functional, cognitive, and psychological abilities. Though the disease typically affects adults in their 30s or 40s, a less common type of the disease known as Juvenile Huntington’s disease, which affects children and adolescents. As of now, there is no cure but proper medical treatment can help manage the symptoms.

Statistics show that there are around 30,000 people in the United States with Huntington’s disease and about 200,000 who are at risk.

How to Diagnose Huntington’s Disease

There are two levels of diagnosis. The preliminary level includes neurological and neuropsychological examination to check motor, functions, sensory functions, and mental agility. The second level may involve brain-imaging tests such as MRI or CT scans. A doctor may also suggest a genetic test to help with confirming their diagnosis.

Causes of Huntington’s Disease

Since it is a genetic disorder, Huntington’s Disease is passed on to children from their parents. A child of a HD patient typically has 50% chance of inheriting the disease.

Why Medical Marijuana for Huntington’s Disease?

Since there is no cure, Huntington’s disease treatment includes opioid based medications to help manage pain related symptoms. Medical marijuana is also a treatment option which many patients are now considering because it helps reduce anxiety, nausea, and insomnia.

Many recent studies have found that the endocannabinoid system regulates certain functions in the human body such as memory, sleep, mood, and appetite. This complex cell-signalling system is comprised of endocannabinoids, receptors, and enzymes. The endocannabinoid molecules are very similar to cannabinoids present in cannabis for Huntington’s disease and when administered externally, it may help reduce insomnia, mood swings, and memory loss. It also helps in restoring appetite, which helps prevent weight loss and another common symptom associated with Huntington’s Disease.

A study found that the patients using marijuana as a part of their treatment had less anxiety and depression and one of them had minor improvements in his motor movements.

In the book, Marijuana as Medicine? The Science Beyond the Controversy, the authors state that because of the presence of cannabinoid receptors in the brain, the possibility only proves the growing popularity and trust in the medical uses of marijuana. Many studies have proved the therapeutic properties of cannabis.

Common Symptoms of Huntington’s Disease

The first step is getting a proper diagnosis. Huntington’s Disease is a degenerative disease, which means the symptoms start to manifest slowly. It could also differ from patient to patient. Most of the symptoms are movement, cognitive, and psychiatric related, such as:

  • Involuntary jerky movements
  • Imbalance
  • Muscle problems and impaired gait
  • Speech impairment
  • Difficulty in carrying out daily tasks
  • Difficulty in processing thoughts
  • Sleep deprivation and fatigue
  • Feeling sad and irritated
  • Suicidal or self-harming thoughts

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms above, we advise that you seek immediate medical attention. The diagnosis from a licensed medical practitioner makes one eligible to use medical marijuana for Huntington’s disease.

Qualifying Conditions of Huntington’s Disease

  • Akinetic Rigid Form of Huntington’s Disease
  • Altered Behavior in Huntington’s Dementia
  • Dementia Due to Huntington Chorea
  • Hereditary Acanthocytosis
  • Huntington’s Chorea
  • Huntington Disease-like Syndrome
  • Huntington’s Disorder
  • Juvenile Onset Huntington’s Disease
  • Late Onset Huntington’s Disease

How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card for Huntington’s Disease

Given that marijuana is a controlled substance prohibited by the federal government, the possession of medical marijuana identification (ID) cards for the affliction is vital to avoid any potential civil and criminal penalties at the state level. The procedure for getting the card for marijuana usage is simple:

  • Patients with Huntington’s Disease will need a signed copy of the physician’s recommendation and proof of residency of the state can register online for an appointment to start the approval process
  • This involves a review of the medical history, followed by discussions, and an examination by a doctor to confirm his/her condition meets the criteria for treatment
  • Once a card has been obtained, the registered user can buy effective strains of accurately labeled marijuana products through state-approved dispensaries, and health clinics without any fear of facing legal issues, potential fines or jail time

Are you looking to get a medical marijuana card for yourself or for someone you care for? Contact us today at 888-316-9085 or info@cccenters.org.