Some facts shaking down after 700 patients

We have now certified about 700 patients in the NYS Medical Marijuana program. We have over 250 data points in our results database.  Some things that are shaking down, in no particular order seem to be:

  • sleep often gets better first, then pain gets better after you adjust the dosing
  • there is a lot of CB1 receptor heterogeneity in response to inhaled delta-9-THC versus ingested (eaten) 11-OH-delta-9-THC. This heterogeneity is not only in the response to the medicine, but also to the side effects from the medicine.
  • CBDs will give a very small percentage of people side effects like a buzz, GI issues like dyspepsia or diarrhea
  • you can get around 50% excellent symptom relief if you adjust medical marijuana in the first couple months
  • you can’t predict what or how much of what medical marijuana will work for any one person

More updates as we get more data.

 

syracuse.com on drugged driving: misleading at best

Here’s an article that sounds really scary:  “Drugged driving now bigger threat than drunk driving.”   A report by the Governor’s Highway Safety Association and the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility  is the basis for the headline. To quote from the article:

Marijuana was the most common drug found in fatally-injured drivers. More than one third — 36.5 percent — tested positive for marijuana…The reported cited a study which found heavy marijuana use can double the risk of motor vehicle crashes resulting in serious injury or death.

OK so let us look at the evidence about marijuana use and car crashes, shall we?

The National Institute on Drug Abuse page about marijuana and driving tells quite a different story. Although some studies show that there is an impairment of driving with higher levels of marijuana in the blood, this page finishes by quoting a 2014 study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that found “no significant crash risk correlated with cannabis” when all other confounding factors were accounted for.

This  NHTSA study, worth the read because it is a really well designed study, found:

…analyses incorporating adjustments for age, gender, ethnicity, and alcohol concentration level did not show a significant increase in levels of crash risk associated with the presence of drugs.

Let’s say that again, there was NO significant increase in crash risk associated with marijuana or other drugs when you account for age, sex, and alcohol use.

It is a fact that marijuana remains in the body for weeks after use, so “testing positive” for marijuana means simply that one has used marijuana some time in the past few weeks. Note how “testing positive” gets morphed into “drugged driving” in the article.

It is also worth mentioning that the  Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility is funded almost exclusively by companies that produce and market alcohol. It is a fact that alcohol producers view recreational marijuana as a threat to their profits and have responded by funding anti-marijuana “public service” announcements in many states.

Can marijuana impair driving? Of course. Is the danger of marijuana impaired drivers bigger than alcohol impaired drivers? Despite the propaganda, the answer is a clear no.

 

 

 

What gets better first?

We now have over 600 patients in our medical marijuana program with well over 200 data points. So some patterns are beginning to emerge.  One of the really common patterns is this:

  • sleep starts improving first with our first few adjustments
  • then daytime pain improves with more adjustments

This highlights the benefit of adusting the medical marijuana dose during the first few weeks: you can dial in better sleep, then keep the sleep good while you dial in daytime pain relief.  This is one very common pattern of getting better on medical marijuana.

 

Vaped THC now way less expensive !

Vireo has just come out with a 1 ml oil product with about 400 mg of THC . This is a “refill” for vape pens, and delivers vaped THC for around 30-35 cents per milligram, way inexpensive  vaped THC in NYS. Last we heard the price was around $130-135.

Here’s a link to the XEO VOID , easy to use vape pen for around $60.

So for under $200, you can get your vape pen and 1 ml of THC vape oil.  So you buy the vape oil, load up the vape pen, and you are good to go. For under 200 bucks. Just sayin’.

 

PTSD and medical marijuana

New York State is considering adding PTSD as an approved condition  in the NYS Medical Marijuana Program. This is a Very Good Idea.

There is a ton of experience out there indicating that marijuana works for anxiety in lots of different people, especially  veterans who suffer with PTSD . Don’t expect the VA system to wake up any time soon.

Like any other class of medicine, medical marijuana’s effect on the endocannabinoid system may work or not work for any one individual.  There is overwhelming evidence from veteran’s lived experience that it should be available to folks as just another class of medicine to try.  With all these guys have sacrificed for us, it just seems right that we should give them the opportunity to live each day a little better. Contact your state legislator and tell them what you think.

 

How to take liquid THC (which tastes horrible)

Here’s a tip from one of our patients who happens to be  a nurse. Nurses are really smart.

Since liquid THC works great but tastes terrible, this is how you take it:

  • take the dropper and put the medicine UNDER your tongue
  • then grab a glass of water and take a drink

That’s it. The water that you sip from the glass washes the liquid THC past your taste buds and it is not nearly as vile tasting.

Nurses Rule ! ! !

 

 

Can I make my own appointment at MedMarijuana Consultants?

Yes you can.  All you have to do is call us or email us.

We will walk you through how to do this. The steps will include:

  • getting us a note from your healthcare provider
  • paying our fee online or in person
  • setting up a video consult or an in-person consult at our Liverpool NY office

That’s it !

Here’s our new patient info page.

 

Freeze your capsules !!

So you have THC or CBD in capsule form and one capsule is a little strong for you. What to do? Well , you could go back and buy the liquid and just take fewer ml but that would get expensive.

Here’s a trick: put your capsules in the freezer for an hour or so, then cut the frozen capsules in half (put them back in the freezer). The liquid inside the capsules may just harden enough to let you get away with this.

There is always a way…

Shingles and postherpetic neuralgia

Shingles can really hurt, and it can hurt for a long time. Turns out that around 1/7 folks with shingles will still have pain two years out.  This is called “postherpetic neuralgia” and it can really bother folks.

shingles

(thanks to medlineplus for the image !)

If other therapies don’t control pain as well as folks would like, there is pretty good evidence that a trial of medical marijuana might just work.  The risks are low and the potential benefits are pretty high. Worth a think.