Myasthenia Gravis and Medical Marijuana
Myasthenia gravis is a serious autoimmune disease that affects neuromuscular function. Modern medicine does not offer a cure for this serious disease, but there are many treatments that can relieve the symptoms. Many people with this disorder are finding that medical marijuana is a valuable tool in treatment.What Is Myasthenia Gravis?
Myasthenia gravis is characterized by weakness in the muscles, especially muscles in the face, neck, and limbs. This weakness becomes extreme after times of activity and resolves with rest. People will notice drooping facial muscles, especially drooping eyelids, along with weakness of the neck and shoulders. In some people, limb movement and breathing are affected. Others may notice double vision as their eye muscles are too weak to coordinate the eye movements needed to see clearly. These symptoms become progressively worse with moderate to strenuous activity and then resolve, usually completely, with adequate rest. However, the degeneration of nerve receptors can cause a great deal of pain.
What Causes Myasthenia Gravis?
Myasthenia gravis is an autoimmune disease in which antibodies attack acetylcholine receptors. Acetylcholine is the messenger molecule that relays signals from nerves to muscles. When acetylcholine receptors are attacked by immune molecules, muscles are unable to respond to nerve signals, leading to weakness and even mild temporary paralysis.