The Catholics have a history of making heroes out of those who suffer the most. I really don’t know what kind of reaction this young man should expect from his “very Catholic” grandmother when she finds out he is using medical marijuana.
My patient is 27, on dialysis, and looking for a kidney transplant to stay alive. He takes medical marijuana to increase his appetite and well being, as well as minimize the pain and anxiety of his situation. I have promised that I will not stop trying to help him. We will go as far as we need to, raising funds if necessary. My help will likely include taking him “public,” using the media. Read more on How Can We Explain Medical Marijuana to a Catholic Grandmother?…
When human lives are at stake, there is simply no room for emotional decisions based on pseudo-science. But since when does anybody listen to anything I have to say?
Individuals are being removed from organ transplant lists because they are users of medical marijuana. Most recently, a staffer at a dispensary that is kind enough to refer people to me for medical marijuana prescriptions told me about a 30ish young man who is in renal kidney failure. He’s been taken off the list because –you guessed it – he is a user of medical marijuana. I’m afraid it’s more common that I’d like to admit. Read more on Denied a Kidney Transplant for Taking Legally Prescribed Medicine?…
In this life, everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler. That includes this questionnaire study about marijuana as an “exit” drug for substance abuse. This article hit a nerve because there are issues here I have come up against before. And I mean “against.” I don’t mean to say it isn’t “good science;” it is. I’m talking about the emotional resistance to the idea that detoxifying from a medication can be comfortable, painless, and effective. I see this coming like I see the sun rising in the morning, because I have been to this place. A few years ago, I found myself in an informal banquet room across the parking lot from a hotel type establishment in a touristy part of San Diego. There was a woman rep from the drug company, Hythiam. She wasn’t an ex beauty queen like most reps, but a fairly credentialed therapist who actually knew what she was talking about. My husband was there with me; a younger, chubbier, and more naïve me – therefore, less authoritative.
These Hythiem/Prometa folks had a great schedule of IVs that removed physiological cravings for various substances of abuse, including methamphetamine. Basically, they use safe and older type drugs intravenously for a lovely pharmacological intervention. The cravings stop, and the person does not “need” to use the drug. Neither they nor I was stupid and naive enough to think that was all you had to do. Aftercare was important and I was ready to jump in. They recommended vitamins — I recommended lots of vitamins, high dose, and chelated to cross the blood-brain barrier. But these addicted folks needed “prosthetic lives.” When all you can muster goes to satisfying a craving or a need, there are not many hours left in the day for work or relationships. I helped with this, too. Some people had problems, but they were mostly because of the psychosocial void left when they did not go for drugs, and their inability to fill it. I worked my damnedest with these folks; and like the company, was eager to be accepted into the addiction community. There was this reception, and they had invited people from every substance abuse program in town. I was there and ready to go to bat as the only physician who had experience with these folks locally. Two people showed up. One was an older, fatherly type. The other was a young sidekick who was presumably learning from him. This older guy said something that rings in my ears now. “You got to earn your sobriety.” Read more on Time to Stop Judging and Start Healing…
Turns out, while most veterans appreciate a stranger saying “thank you” for their service, it can also be a bit uncomfortable. I wonder how these same guys feel about the “Have you thanked a veteran today?” bumper stickers.
I’ve been thanking veterans for a long time. Sometimes, not as consistently as I’d like to because this doctor gig really means that I have to remember a large number of things. Since I began working in the medical marijuana field, where the veterans I meet are paying for a
You probably know by now that I’m all about helping people relieve chronic pain and live longer and healthier lives. Just the other day, a gentleman visited me at the clinic to request medical marijuana. He said his feet had rotated 180 degrees from normal when he was born. He was literally born with his feet on backwards.
He was a young black man who looked much younger than the 47 he told me was his age. He said orthopedic surgeons had started working on him before he could remember. He’d had a total of 34 operations, with the most recent at age 18.
To me, his gait looked amazingly normal. “I bet you want to see my feet,” he said as he ripped off his shoes and socks. He had one eight inch well-heeled vertical scar on the posterior aspect of each of his very thin ankles, and a transverse scar of about the same length on the outside of each foot. The left one was a bit more deformed than
I recently got hold of a copy of Dr. Atkins’ Vita-Nutrient Solution; a book by the same Robert C. Atkins, M.D. who invented the “Atkins Diet” –mainly known as the low-carb diet. I was impressed by his general erudition and review of the literature. He had even visited with various luminaries of alternative medicine. Here was a guy who was capable of writing a pretty complete vitamin and mineral prescription for almost any chronic illness that was part of an internal medicine practice.
In a section titled “My Own Transformation,” he tells how, when he was devoted to mainstream medicine, he found a diet that worked for him and for most folks. He had found it in the Journal of the American Medical Association, which is perhaps the most mainstream medical journal that exists. He wrote his first book about that diet. He was shocked when a consensus panel from the American Medical Association was critical. After all, he had been relying on medical literature which had been reviewed by peers and validated in every way that academics respect and deserve when they have done work. He started questioning these professional “edicts” and found himself squarely in the world of nutrition-based therapeutics. I have believed for a long time that most psychiatric disorders, maybe all, are the result of a genetically transmitted limitation of the ability to metabolize nutrients. There is plenty of evidence for this. Read more on Yes, Virginia — Cannabis IS Medicine…
It took me a while at first to realize that everyplace I saw a green cross, it was going to be a medical marijuana facility. After all, the green cross is some kind of an international symbol for a “druggist,” for someone who sells prescription drugs (primarily) as prescribed. In France, as well as in Canada, I remember following such signs to get a prescription filled.
This one substance, this marijuana, is unique in a couple of ways. First, it is the only prescription drug that has never been required to be tested for safety or efficacy. Second – there is no government oversight as to quality or purity.
Marijuana seems to be something that people want first, then figure out a reason for later. The results are not exactly what I consider beneficial. Read more on Medical Marijuana Can Become Big Business…