Key Findings from Tikun Olam’s Medical Cannabis Research

Tikun Olam is proud to be a global pioneer in the world of medical cannabis research. For more than ten years, we’ve been working to produce one of the largest databases of medical cannabis studies and clinical trials ever. We are excited to share some of the most inspiring results and clinical successes. 

Here we break down crucial research and findings that support cannabis treatment for:

  • Digestive problems
  • Pain and Inflammation
  • Autism
  • Anxiety
  • Palliative cancer care  

 

Digestive Problems and Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

When digestive problems occur, it can mean uncomfortable symptoms and even severe chronic conditions. Some of the most serious are inflammatory bowel diseases, including ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis involve abdominal pain, diarrhea, rectal bleeding, weight loss, and fatigue.

While there is no cure for inflammatory bowel diseases like Crohn’s, our research shows cannabis can relieve symptoms better than most of today’s treatment options.

Tikun Studies on Cannabis for Digestive Issues

  1.  A placebo-controlled, double-blind study on cannabis for Crohn’s disease

 

Our placebo-controlled, double-blinded study was the first of its kind. To determine cannabis’s efficacy for Crohn’s disease, we looked at 21 patients with Crohn’s Disease Activity Index (CDAI) scores over 200 who had not responded to therapy with anti-tumor agents, immune-modulators, or steroids. Eleven patients took cannabis, while ten patients took placebos.

 

Key Study Results

 

  • Five out of the 11 patients in the cannabis group achieved complete remission with a CDAI score of <150. Amazing!
  • Ten out of the 11 cannabis patients saw a decrease in CDAI scores to >100
  • Three out of the 11 patients eliminated the need for steroids altogether 
  • Compared to the placebo group, cannabis patients experienced less pain and improved appetite and quality of life 

 

  1.  NEW! A placebo-controlled, double-blind study on cannabis for Ulcerative Colitis

 

Our placebo-controlled, double-blinded study published in the peer-reviewed PLOS One journal showed incredible results. Out of the 32 ulcerative colitis patients tested, 90% reported less stomach pain after taking Tikun’s medical cannabis Erez strain. What’s more? These patients were previously resistant to conventional medicines and in desperate need of relief.

 

Key Study Results

 

  • 90% of patients experienced noticeable pain relief
  • 62% of patients reported improved bowel activity
  • 54% of patients said they experienced reduced severity of all symptoms
  • 27% of patients said they experienced an improved quality of life (compared to the placebo), including markers like general health, appetite, libido, and concentration

 

Pain & Inflammation

In small doses, inflammation is your body’s way of fighting against things that can harm it, like infections, injuries, and toxins. It is a valuable part of your immune response that helps you heal. But when inflammation runs rampant, your white blood cells can end up attacking healthy tissues and organs. Chronic inflammation can lead to constant pain and long-term damage to your body.

Certain drugs like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and steroids can treat inflammation and pain. But research has shown that cannabis may be more effective with fewer side effects.

Tikun Studies on Cannabis for Pain and Inflammation

  1. Cannabidiol for inflammation and pain

We wanted to know if CBD could help reduce pain and inflammation, so we conducted a study on laboratory rodents to compare three different treatment options: Purified CBD, cannabis extracts enriched with CBD, and commercial anti-inflammatory drugs. Our goal was to find the most effective treatment and dosage for lasting relief. 

Key Study Results

  • Avidekel, Tikun Olam’s full-plant extract (high in CBD and low in THC), helped decrease pain and inflammation in correlation with increased dosing 
  • Avidekel was much more effective than CBD isolate, which was only helpful in a limited dosing range. 
  • When compared to pharmaceuticals, Avidekel exhibited better anti-inflammatory effectiveness than tramadol and aspirin

 

Autism

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is an umbrella term that describes a group of neurodevelopmental conditions. People who have ASD often demonstrate repetitive and restricted behaviors that can prevent them from living normal, independent lives. The CDC estimates nearly 1 in 59 children are diagnosed with ASD, and that number may be on the rise. Children with autism need safe, natural, and effective therapies to improve their quality of life. 

Tikun Studies on Cannabis for Autism

  1. Assessing the safety of CBD-rich cannabis for children with autism

Our retrospective study estimated whether CBD-rich cannabis could be effective and safe for children with autism. As part of the study, we looked at 60 children aged 11-17 and evaluated the treatment’s success using the Caregiver Global Impression of Change scale

Key Study Results

  • After three months of cannabis treatment, most children experienced significant improvements in anxiety (39%), communication (47%), and behavior (61%)
  • 33% of the study participants reduced the doses of their medications, and 24% stopped taking medicine altogether

 

  1. Studying CBD-rich cannabis for severe behavioral problems in children with autism 

In addition to safety and efficacy, we wanted to know if CBD-rich cannabis could reduce severe behavioral outbreaks in children with autism. Over six months, we collected data for 188 autism patients treated with cannabis. Most of the patients received cannabis oil that contained 30% CBD and 1.5% THC.

 

Key Study Results

 

  • After six months of treatment, 92% of patients saw symptom improvements in symptoms, such as:
    • depression 
    • restlessness 
    • rage attacks 
    • anxiety 
    • seizures 
    • agitation 
    • digestion problems 
    • constipation 
    • sleep problems 
  • At intake, only 31% of patients reported a good quality of life. At six months, 66.8% of patients reported this
  • Participants reported better sleep, positive mood, and ability to shower and dress independently
  • 34% reduced medication consumption 
  • 20% stopped taking antipsychotics

 

Anxiety & Depression

Depression and anxiety often coincide, and experts estimate 45% of people with one mental health issue meet the criteria for at least one more. Although these conditions can have different causes, they share feelings of sadness, hopelessness, anger, fears, and worry, along with physical symptoms like aches and pains, appetite changes, and difficulty sleeping.

Antidepressant and anxiety medications can help, but a significant number of people feel no relief from traditional therapies. These people need more effective options with fewer adverse effects. 

Tikun Studies on Cannabis for Anxiety and Depression

  1. Treating depressed and anxious patients with medical cannabis

We believe cannabis is a powerful natural option for mental health treatment with far fewer side effects than standard antidepressants. To test that hypothesis, we reviewed survey information from 1,338 depressed and anxious patients we treated between 2009 and 2016. 

Key Study Results

  • 94% of patients reported an improvement in symptoms after six months of cannabis treatment
  • Most patients reported less pain, better mood, and improved sleep quality 
  • In patients with depression, 34% reported significant improvement while 32% reported moderate improvement
  • In patients with anxiety, 28% reported substantial improvement while 30% reported moderate improvement

 

Cancer

Cancer is one of the world’s leading causes of death. In a healthy body, trillions of cells continuously grow and divide. But cancer disrupts this process and causes abnormal cells to grow because of mutations or changes in DNA.

Typical cancer treatments include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and targeted drug therapy, but these treatments can cause severe side effects like pain and nausea. Cancer patients often turn to cannabis to help relieve their discomfort.  

Tikun Studies on Cannabis for Palliative Cancer Care

  1. Studying the safety and efficacy of medical cannabis for cancer patients

To determine medical cannabis’ safety and efficacy, we analyzed data from Tikun Olam’s cancer patients who received medical cannabis between 2015 and 2017. The analysis included 2,970 patients who suffered from various types of cancer, including breast, pancreatic, lung, and colorectal. Over half of the patients were in Stage 4.

Patients consumed at least one of four Tikun Olam strains containing different CBD and THC ratios. After six months of treatment, patients reported their experience.

Key Study Results

  • 95.9% of patients saw symptoms improve, including nausea and vomiting, restlessness, sleep disorders, anxiety and depression, and headaches
  • 35.1% of patients decrease their traditional drug consumption after taking cannabis
  • 36% of patients stopped taking opioids during treatment, and 9.9% decreased their dose

 

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At Tikun Olam, we’re committed to expanding our understanding of what medical cannabis can do to reduce suffering and promote greater health. We’re driving that mission forward every day by developing proprietary strains that are clinically proven to help. We look forward to adding to our database of cannabis research and are constantly conducting new clinical trials and studies. 

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