The first known uses of cannabis as medicine go all the way back to 2737 B.C. Where, according to Chinese legend, Emperor Shen Neng recommended drinking cannabis tea to treat various illnesses; including gout, malaria, rheumatism, and bad memory. The medical use of cannabis continues for thousands of years. In the late 1700s, William O’Shaughnessy; an Irish doctor in the British East India Company, spoke out about the benefits of cannabis for rheumatism and nausea. It was only when the "War on Drugs" began in the early 1900's that cannabis came under attack, and the use of medical cannabis waned.
You may be surprised to know that the US Government, despite leading the so called "War on Drugs", has actually been supplying medical marijuana to patients for over thirty years! Since November 20th 1982, the US Federal Government has been been sending Irvin Rosenfeld tins filled with hundreds of pre-rolled joints, enough for him to smoke ten joints a day! Irvin is one of just two surviving federal medical marijuana patients.
Thankfully in the last few decades people have begun to rediscover the many medical benefits of cannabis, aka medical marijuana or MMJ. From medical dispensaries in legal states in the USA, to underground caregivers growing for patients, to political campaigns across the world - the fight to reclaim cannabis' status as a medicine is on!
Rick Simpson became famous worldwide for extolling the virtues of medical cannabis. He created Rick Simpson Oil (RSO) and has helped to treat people around the world suffering from cancer, AIDS, chronic pain and many more ailments using a potent cannabis oil.
There is so much research now able the medical benefits of cannabis, with patients who have used cannabis to successfully manage or treat; ADHD, AIDS/HIV, Alzheimers, Arthritis, Chronic Pain, Crohns, Depression, Epilepsy, Fibromyalgia, Glaucoma, Migraines, MS, and PTSD - as well as many other conditions! Cannabis help even been shown to help reduce cancers!
As one patient told us, "after 20 years of being wheelchair bound you can't tell me medical cannabis doesn't work!"
In The Netherlands, the use of cannabis is tolerated and medical marijuana is available through pharmacies, however the high costs and limited choices prevent some patients from getting the medicine they need. The Stichting Suver Nuver (Super Nova Foundation) has created Medical Social Club's in Friesland, Groningen and Zwolle, that connect patients, growers and extracters. They provide low cost high quality cannabis oil to patients. We spoke with founder Rinus Beintema, and a member of the club on the night of Stichting Suver Nuver's one year anniversary party.
Medical cannabis is illegal in the United Kingdom, apart from a high priced oil called Sativex that is almost impossible to obtain. However thanks to the work of many activists the UK medical cannabis movement is slowly progressing. Groups like the United Patients Alliance (UPA) and the EndOurPain campaign are working with the government to try obtain safe access for medical cannabis patients.
We spoke with one patient from the United Kingdom, Penny Fitzlyon, who uses cannabis to treat her Multiple Sclerosis. You can read her story in our article Cannabis Controls My MS - Patient Profiles: Penny.
In the United States medical cannabis is legal in 28 states and Washington DC. Many patients use medical marijuana dispensaries to purchase their medical cannabis. In some states medical cannabis growers known as caregivers can grow for patients, or the patient can even grow their own mecidine themselves. Many groups continue the push for better, safer and lower cost cannabis for people who use cannabis medicinally. Grow For Vets is cannabis charity who claim that since their founding in Colorado in January 2014, that they "have given away over three quarters of a million dollars worth of cannabis to military veterans..."
Haleigh's Hope is a cannabis strain that was bred for high levels of CBD (Cannabidiol) and low levels of THC. Being low in THC this strain does not have the high associated with strains that have higher levels of THC. This combination of high CBD and low THC has benefitted many patients, especially those suffering from epilsepsy.
The oil is named for Haleigh Cox, a four year old girl with Cerebral Palsy and Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome; a severe form of epilepsy. After her mother moved her Colorado so Haleigh could access cannabis oil, she has gone from over 200 seizures a day to as few as 4 a day.
When we here of stories like that of Amylea Nunez; the world's youngest medical marijuana patient, it's hard not to see the medical benefits of cannabis. She was born with a rare form of epilepsy that caused up to 15 seizures a day. Haleigh's Hope offered the solution for her and Amylea has been seizure free for over 4 months!
Parents like Peter Starostecki, father of Stefan Starostecki; a 5 year old medical marijuana patient who uses cannabis to control his seizures, have seen first hand the beneficial effects of medical cannabis
Anneliese Clark is another of the many parents whose childrens lives has been changed by using medical cannabis. Anneliese's daughter Christina has epilepsy and suffers from horrific seizures, cannabis oil has slowed down and stopped most of these seizures and allowed her to live again!
Do you use cannabis medicinally and want to share your story? Please contact us!