Cannabis effective for ADHD?

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Is cannabis effective in treating ADHD and Tourette syndrome?

(06.06.2010) Scientists from the Universities of Göttingen, Hamburg and Dresden have found that the cannabis substance "Delta-9-THC" is therapeutically helpful in the treatment of Tourette's Syndrome (TS) and in Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) could. For example, the doctors report the successful treatment of a 15-year-old boy suffering from treatment-refractory Tourette syndrome and ADHD. The administration of the substance "Delta-9-THC" led to a significant improvement in the so-called "tics" without causing side effects. In addition, the administration of "Delta-9-THC" allowed the simultaneous treatment of ADHD by stimulants (A Case Report. J Clin Psychopharmacol 2010; 30 (2): 190-2).

The treatment has succeeded in increasing the transmission of nerve stimuli in the cerebral cortex, the researchers explained. It was therefore obvious that "Delta-9-THC could be a successful alternative for patients with severe Tourette syndrome that does not respond to classic treatments," the authors of the scientific report concluded. The administration of stimulants to patients who suffer from both ADHD syndrome and TS at the same time has been observed to increase the "tics". By awarding "Delta-9-THC" a successful treatment can be carried out without producing side effects. "The increase in intracortical inhibition could be mediated by modulating the release of various neurotransmitters, including dopamine and gamma-aminobutyric acid," said the scientists.

It has been known for some time that the proportion of adolescents who use cannabis while suffering from ADHD syndrome is relatively high. For example, cannabis in the brain of ADHD patients has a similar effect to the drug methylphenidate and inter alia blocks the reuptake of the messenger substance dopamine. However, the use of cannabis increases the inhibition of motivation, especially in ADHD patients. In addition, the use and trade of cannabis is strictly prohibited in Germany. (sb)

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