UK boy suffering from cancer makes recovery after treatment with cannabis oil

29 March 2017

A 14-year-old UK boy suffering from cancer appeared to have made a recovery after his parents treated him with cannabis oil.

Deryn Blackwell's parents used the class B drug to ease the pain and anxiety from treatment in hospital for leukaemia and a rare secondary cancer.

Deryn, now 17, had recovered since then and is now at college.

Cannabis contained at least two active chemicals that had medicinal properties, cannabidiol, which seems to soothe anxiety and chronic pain with no psychological effects, and tetrahydrocannabinol, which had pain-relieving properties, medical studies had shown.

Multiple sclerosis is the only condition for which cannabis could be used legally in the UK. People suffering from the condition had been able to get Sativex an oral spray containing the drug, which had only been prescribed by a handful of doctors due to its cost since 2010. The drug has been under trial in hospitals since 2011.

According to users, cannabis helped control painful tightening muscle spasms, chronic pain and, in certain cases, could help them keep mobile.

The Mirror  quoted Peter Reynolds, a cannabis expert who headed CLEAR(Cannabis Law Reform UK), which aimed to legalise medicinal cannabis, many people found it very effective at controlling MS symptoms, particularly chronic pain, tremours and spasticity.

Deryn is now studying catering and holds a part-time job as a vegan chef.

Meanwhile, cancer experts warn that stories like Deryn's could not prove the efficacy of one treatment over another until properly controlled clinical trials had been conducted.

''There have been lots of studies looking at the effect of cannabis on cells growing in the lab, but that's been quite mixed, it seems to have had different effects on different types of cancer cells,'' said The Independent reported quoting Emma Smith, science information manager for Cancer Research UK.

According to scientists Dernyn's case supported the need for more research into the medicinal properties of cannabis.

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