Pot Stops Pain, Spasms: Study
Medical marijuana shown effective in clinical trials
By Jane Yager,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 18, 2010 3:27 AM CST
Yamileth Bolanos, who runs Pure Life Alternative Wellness Center, holds a vial of marijuana known as Jupiter Kush, at her store in Los Angeles.   (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

(Newser) – Who knew? Marijuana actually does stop pain—and muscle spasms. A $8.7 million California study, including the first US clinical trials of marijuana use in decades, has found pot significantly relieves neuropathic pain and reduces muscle spasms in multiple sclerosis patients. A leading neuropsychiatrist found the studies so convincing that he hopes marijuana will no longer be classified as a Schedule I drug, the Los Angeles Times reports.

An oncologist involved in the study, however, countered that while it's clear "cannabis has benefits" and "has been a medicine for 2,700 years," he doesn't expect the debate over marijuana to change. "Science has not been driving this train for a long time now. I think it's all politics," he said. Despite the promising results of the state-funded study, it's unlikely to be continued because of the California budget crisis.