Marijuana and Traumatic Arthritis by Anonymous

  Although I was aware of cannabis as a beneficial substance through my casual use as an artist and musician, it was only when I became disabled that I fully appreciated its wondrous properties. 

In 1996 I had a serious automobile accident in which the car I was driving was hit by a semi trailer and flipped over six or seven times. 

Although I had no broken bones, internal bleeding or loss of consciousness, the accident left me with severe inflammation in my knees and elbows.  The doctor was draining 150 cc's of fluid from my knees with a long painful needle every week.  He then put me on prednisone 20 mg a day.  After a few weeks it was clear that there was no improvement and in fact it was worse.  He added several nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs without success. 

The side effects of those drugs (upset stomach , nausea and headache) were so it difficult that the doctor decided to put me on methotrexate.  Methotrexate is a very powerful drug used in the treatment of cancer!  It is highly toxic and I had to inject myself using an insulin syringe every week.  The side effects of headache and nausea were unbearable.  I began smoking a joint before injecting the methotrexate and I found this greatly mitigated the side effects. 

Unfortunately, my condition worsened and my doctor declared me fully disabled I was introduced to a New York doctor who recommended that I stop taking my other toxic medications and increase my cannabis to three to five grams a day.  I reduced the prednisone slowly over the course of two years to 2.5 mg per day!  Furthermore, I have completely eliminated methotrexate from my regime! 

The typical profile of an arthritis patient is progressive degeneration of the joints accompanied by deterioration of the muscles as well.  I have been holding steady, and though my arthritis has become slightly worse, my general physical health has improved and I have resisted all efforts which have been made to put me into a wheelchair thanks to cannabis!  The fact that it remains prohibited and patients run the risk of being arrested as they seek relief from their pain is shameful.