What is Sativex and how does it work?
Sativex is the brand name for Nabiximols, a standardized cannabinoid-based drug, clinically tested and produced from Cannabis Sativa L plants. Plants are grown specifically to produce two separate chemotypes and for an exclusive concentration of cannabinoids, such as Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Each 100 μL spray contains 2.7 mg THC and 2.5 mg CBD, as well as up to 0.04 g alcohol.
In general,Sativex regulates the endocannabinoid system, which plays an important role in the transduction of central nervous system signals. For some diseases, such as multiple sclerosis. Some of the active ingredients of the cannabis plant, such as THC and CBD, can be used to copy the effect of the endocannabinoid system and relieve the spasticity symptoms of multiple sclerosis.
To date, more than 1500 patients have been treated with Sativex in various clinical study programs and more than 3500 patients have been monitored for safety in observational studies in the EU, and more than 50,000 patients have been treated by prescription worldwide.
In fact,it is a medical product currently sold almost all over the world by some of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies. Sativex is, therefore, a standardized and globally marketable compound through which its creators and distributors recover incredible benefits by standardizing the use of naturally occurring cannabinoids for the treatment of various diseases.
Sativex is a drug mainly based on CBD and THC, but its price remains very high. The drug is usually sold in boxes of three vials of 10 ml each. In Spain, the price of the box is about 450 to 800 $ in some countries.
The advantages of Sativex
Already in 2007, a study showed that 40% of patients with multiple sclerosis treated with Sativex had a significant decrease in muscle spasticity. This does not mean that Sativex is good for everything, which is why experts are currently recommending taking it with other treatments. However, it is mainly prescribed to patients who would not have been successful with more conventional treatments.
Sativex has undergone various clinical trials on the medicinal potential of cannabis. Several studies to demonstrate the efficacy of the antispasmodic properties of CBD for patients with multiple sclerosis. Sativex is also useable to treat lymph node necrosis, a rare muscle disease.
But another GW Pharmaceuticals drug, Epidiolex, became the first cannabis-derived drug to receive FDA approval in late 2018 to treat certain rare and severe types of epilepsy, such as Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome.
Sativex vs Cannabis
If Sativex is a natural extract based on cannabinoids and natural terpenes, it will be very different from the tinctures or cannabis oils you might buy, for example in typical American clinics. It is a standardized pharmaceutical product, which is why it has been designed to provide the same number of cannabinoids in each dose.
When a patient is treated with cannabis flowers or extracts, slight variations occur in the concentration of Phytocannabinoids, terpenes, and phytochemicals from one plant to another. Some patients are not ready to cope with possible variations in flowers or extracts and will be more reassured by a drug like Sativex.