Caring for people with multiple sclerosis who use cannabis for symptom control
MetadataShow full item record
Daly, L., Gibson, C. & Dewing, J. (2019) Caring for people with multiple sclerosis who use cannabis for symptom control. British Journal of Community Nursing, 24 (6), p. 257.
Research to-date suggests a large proportion of people living with MS are using cannabis as a way to self-manage symptoms, and, if not, believe that there are potential benefits in using this drug. Community nurses are frontline caregivers; therefore, it is likely they will come into contact with people who use cannabis for MS within the home setting. The literature base surrounding this topic is largely driven by quantitative research examining the effectiveness of cannabis as a medicine. This review has found that qualitative research exploring the experiences of people who use cannabis for MS is lacking around the world and is completely absent within UK nursing literature. Persons using cannabis for MS, in some cases, do not feel safe in discussing this with healthcare professionals through fear of being judged. This literature review discusses how people perceive the effectiveness of cannabis in helping symptoms associated with MS while also drawing upon stigma and legal concerns people face. Community nurses will gain more understanding of social/ political issues and how this influences the decision to use cannabis. The findings from this review will help community nurses inform their practice and enhance person-centred relationships between nurses and persons living with MS.