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posted by mrpg on Sunday April 08 2018, @11:46AM   Printer-friendly
from the king-of-pain dept.

Medical Marijuana's 'Catch-22': Limits On Research Hinders Patient Relief

By the time Ann Marie Owen, 61, turned to marijuana to treat her pain, she was struggling to walk and talk. She was also hallucinating. For four years, her doctor prescribed a wide range of opioids for transverse myelitis, a debilitating disease that caused pain, muscle weakness and paralysis. The drugs not only failed to ease her symptoms, they hooked her.

When her home state of New York legalized marijuana for the treatment of select medical ailments, Owens decided it was time to swap pills for pot. But her doctors refused to help. "Even though medical marijuana is legal, none of my doctors were willing to talk to me about it," she says. "They just kept telling me to take opioids."

Although 29 states have legalized marijuana to treat pain and other ailments, the growing number of Americans like Owen who use marijuana and the doctors who treat them are caught in the middle of a conflict in federal and state laws — a predicament that is only worsened by thin scientific data.

Because the federal government considers marijuana a Schedule 1 drug, research on marijuana or its active ingredients is highly restricted and even discouraged in some cases. Underscoring the federal government's position, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar recently pronounced that there was "no such thing as medical marijuana."

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  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 09 2018, @12:05PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 09 2018, @12:05PM (#664371)

    There's a whole other healing component to Marijuana that nobody seems to talk about. It's in the Zen of growing your own. Not in an indoor "Grow Op" type way, but outside in the back yard, along with your tomatoes and lettuce. It takes care and patience. Every morning, you get a walk in the garden to deliver water and nutrients. And then you know exactly what has gone into it's production. I use only organic fertilizers with mine - that is seaweed during the grow phase and molasses during flower. It's not the "Best Weed" I've ever smoked but it's totally the "Best Weed" I've ever smoked. You end up a little bit more synced with nature as you have to watch the moon / frost cycles in the fall that indicate when to harvest.

    Fresh air, vitamin D, walk in the garden, meditation.... Those are side effects I've experienced from weed.

    Eh wot? You can smoke it too? Crazy stuff.

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