Cannabis Therapy being Explored in Concussion Treatment

March 28, 2019, Kitchener, Ontario

Posted by: Robert Deutschmann, Personal Injury Lawyer

Shallow Focus Photography of Cannabis Plant A new study is hoping to reduce the neurological symptoms suffered by former professional National Hockey League players post-concussion.  This group of athletes is the experimental pool for Dr. Charles Taylor who is one of Canada’s leading brain injury experts working out of Toronto Western Hospital. He is reasonably hopeful that the yearlong study of cannabis based therapies will help to reduce the severity of neurological issues that the former pro hockey players are suffering. For many of them successful treatment would improve their quality of life.

There are over 100 players who have volunteered to take part in the randomized trial. Many of the players suffer from post-concussion syndrome. They have developed impairments that are common in concussion patients including depression, progressive dementia, PTSD and CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy). These conditions can make life very difficult for those who have them and some are fatal conditions. All can raise the risk suicide and self-harming behaviors dramatically.

The NHLAA which represents all retired players has been advocating for research and care for the post brain injury conditions that many of their members suffer from. They have applied for grants to support research into post concussive therapies in recognition of the fact that the studies are expensive.

Other athletes in high contact sports such as rugby and football are also subject to elevated rates of post concussive ailments.

The pressure and money for research into this field of research appears to be coming primarily from the military and pro sports.

Current guidelines on concussion in sport for Canada are here. Here are some excerpts from the guidelines.


  1. Concussion may be caused by a direct blow to the head, face, neck or elsewhere on the body with an “impulsive force transmitted to the head.
  2. Concussion typically results in the rapid onset of shortlived impairment of neurologic function that resolves spontaneously.
  3. Concussion may result in neuropathologic changes, but the acute clinical symptoms largely reflect a functional disturbance rather that a structural injury.
  4. Concussion results in a graded set of clinical symptoms that may or may NOT involve a loss of consciousness. Resolution of the clinical and cognitive symptoms typically follows a sequential course, however it is important to note that in a small percentage of cases, post concussive symptoms may be prolonged
  5. No abnormality on standard neuroimaging studies is seen in concussion.

Signs and Symptoms

  • Cover 5 clinical domains
  • Symptoms – Somatic (e.g.. Headache), cognitive (e.g., in a fog), and/or emotional (angry)
  • Physical Signs – Loss of consciousness or amnesia
  • Behavioral Changes (irritability or nervousness)
  • Cognitive Impairment (slowed reaction time)
  • Sleep Disturbance (Fatigue or interrupted sleep)
  • Only one symptom is required to diagnose concussion.
Posted under concussion

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About Deutschmann Law

Deutschmann Law serves South-Western Ontario with offices in Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, Woodstock, Brantford, Stratford and Ayr. The law practice of Robert Deutschmann focuses almost exclusively in personal injury and disability insurance matters. For more information, please visit or call us toll-free at 1-866-414-4878.

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