The Obsessive-compulsive disorder(OCD) is a mental disorder marked by anxiety or distress, characterized by the presence of persistent thoughts (better known as obsessions). These recurrent thoughts are suppressed by new ones or actions, known as compulsions (acts performed in response to the obsession). The compulsions aim at preventing the anxiety or distress.
Around 60% of patients with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder do not respond to first-line treatment. Options in these cases include an increase of dosages or switching to another drug. In this sense, new evidence reported patients with treatment-resistant OCD who could respond better to an increase dosage of medications combined with medical cannabis.
Clinical studies confirm effective results using cannabinoids in patients with OCD
In 2008, researchers published an article in the American Journal of Psychiatry. In this article, the researchers presented the experiences of two refractory OCD patients after synthetic THC administration.
To the female subject, doctors had prescribed for 8 months an antidepressant and psychological therapy to treat her OCD and major depression, but without success. Interestingly, the woman reported that when she smoked cannabis, her symptoms were relieved. It was then decided to supplement her current treatment with synthetic THC. Her OCD symptoms were reduced, and her severity disease score improved by 50%. Regarding the male subject, after the addition of the synthetic THC to the ongoing medication, his symptoms were reduced within 2 weeks, and his severity disease score improved by 35%.
In 2010, a clinical study was subsequently published in the Journal Behavioral Pharmacology, describing the observation of CBD effects on rodents. In this study, the researchers found that Cannabidiol (CBD) has been shown to have anxiolytic effects, both in animals and humans, could significantly reduce symptoms associated with stimulated compulsive animal behavior.
In general, these studies demonstrated a therapeutic potential of cannabinoids to reduce Refractory obsessive compulsive disorders. However, new studies are needed to definitively validate its utility or not.