A Note from the author and patient:
Dr. Grinspoon: We are happy to share this story with our names attached for those who may not be aware of the excellent results of using medicinal marijuana for pain relief, even for seniors (especially for seniors!). It's time that our seniors out there who are in pain know that there is a better alternative to mind warping prescription pain relief. Unfortunately, although, their prescription is often paid for by insurance and non-government-sanctioned marijuana is not, they are unlikely to go through the aggravation and red tape needed to get the government's marijuana. We are not government bashers. They are also deceived. We live a wonderful country, so surely they must be doing something right somewhere along the way! - Fred and Deborah Best
Pain and Depression
I have been caregiver for my 76 yr. old husband for nearly 13 years, during which time we have encountered a myriad of health issues involving pain/mood, etc.
Fred had a quadruple by-pass in 1992 and then in 1995 had a series of severe strokes which left him very much disabled and wheel chair bound since. With the ability to do little more than feed himself and pray, and in the prime of his life at 63, we started on the rocky road to hell in the medical system. My eyes got open to what is and is not available to us out there and it's scary to put your trust in the system when you are so lacking knowledge medically. If only we had known about the benefits of medicinal marijuana back then, things may have gone much differently !!
When my husband began to have pain in his legs and feet due to lack of circulation, I so sympathized with him: He couldn't sleep. His pain was so bad.
We saw our cardiologist and after a Doppler revealed that it was too far gone to perform surgery because either he would not live through it or he would not heal from it. We got a prescription for the morphine patch (starting on the lowest dose). This was incredibly ineffective and rendered Fred a vegetable. His transfers became impossible for me and the home-makers (he's 165lb. 5' 8" and I'm 130lb. 5' 1"). Sure, it took away the pain but I doubted if he even knew where he was much of the time....This was totally unacceptable! One thing he hadn't lost through all of this had been his ability to think and be mentally involved. One day, during a visit from our Access Centre Case Worker, I mentioned what had been happening and she very sympathetically asked if we ever considered trying “medical marijuana.” Of course I'd heard about it before but never dreamed it could be the answer for us. Then through the media I heard that it would take a very long time to be approved for medical marijuana through the province if at all and that the medical marijuana offered by the Government was inferior and possibly dangerous.
I'd been in this too long to throw him to wolves just yet! So I called someone I trusted whom I knew used marijuana for severe arthritis and has functioned well with it. He grew his own so I knew I could trust it.
We have not looked back. Not only did it address Fred's pain, it addressed his deep, deep, depression. And I say, "Praise God!" We are both practicing Christians and would like to tell you that we believe that this was a gift from God. I would have no compunction sharing this information with anyone, including our Christian friends and clergy. By the way, Fred has been drinking marijuana tea (the leaf, simmered just to the boiling point in 10% cream) only when he is in pain and depressed and what a difference it makes! I feel I have a large part of my husband back......and when he's happy, I am happy.
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