Case Report: Cannabis Helps with Treatment-Resistant Pruritus

This observational case study was published in April 2021 in the journal JAMA Dermatology. Pruritus is a condition that causes persistent, chronic itching and unpleasant sensations in the skin.

The study followed a woman in her 60s with a 10-year history of pruritus that was not responsive to multiple therapies. She used both cannabis flower and cannabis tinctures over a 20-month period, and saw fairly dramatic improvements in her condition. Her scores on the discipline's "Dermatology Life Quality Index" (DLQI) dropped from 17 to 1. The scale used for this index:


0 – 1 no effect at all on patient's life
2 – 5 small effect on patient's life
6 – 10 moderate effect on patient's life
11 – 20 very large effect on patient's life
21 – 30 extremely large effect on patient's life

So her condition was having a very large effect on her life at the beginning, and no effect at all after 20 months of treatment. That's more than encouraging even though it's just a single case study. These case studies are very important because they give researchers and those that fund the researchers reasons to explore more rigorous clinical trials and observational research.

Here's a quick summary from our friends at NORML with a link to the research paper (paywall alert).