Pubdate: Thu, 24 Jul 2014
Source: Vancouver Sun (CN BC)
Copyright: 2014 Postmedia Network Inc.
Author: Walter Lemmo
Page: B7


Re: Easy to get, easy to buy, Special Report, July 19

As a licensed naturopathic doctor focused on primary care and
adjunctive cancer therapies, I have noticed a staggering increase in
patient queries about the medicinal use of marijuana. We see the same
in the media, whether CNN profiling Dr. Gupta, myriad patient
testimonials, or the advent of legalization in certain states.

As a doctor I have three concerns which your article gave short shrift

First, medical benefit: There are and always will be recreational
users, but I have documented patients who have reduced stronger
medications, such as morphine, to alleviate pain while at the same
time reducing unwanted drug side effects. I have seen terminally ill
patients increase their appetite, reduce nausea and stabilize their
condition with marijuana. Second, industry standards: For medical
marijuana users the important issues are batch variation and a lack of
standardization and quality control on the cannabis which is readily
available. For medicinal purposes, there needs to be more focus on
dosage, methods of administration, and the research being collated in
this area.

Finally, your article put great emphasis on ease of access but almost
none on why a licensed doctor would wilfully deny care to a patient
who would benefit from marijuana - especially patients on patent 
medicines causing them undue side effects.

Walter Lemmo, N.D. Vancouver
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