Sativex, a drug produced by GW Pharmaceuticals, has been shown to dramatically reduce the effects of spasticity in multiple sclerosis patients. This is great news, because spasticity truly sucks. For those blissfully not in the know, spasticity occurs when MS patient's muscles get the signal to contract, but not to relax, and therefore remain stiff and bent out of shape. Spasticity can be quite painful and extremely debilitating, and if you've ever seen an MS patient with twisted limbs, spasticity is the culprit.
The catch, for US citizens, is that Sativex is derived from the demon weed, marijuana. The ever benevolent Powers That Be here in the good old US of A long ago decided that marijuana, and any of its derivatives, must be kept out of the hands of red-blooded Americans, no matter how effective marijuana-based therapies might prove to be.
The sad truth is that most of the anti-marijuana legislation passed in the mid-20th century was more concerned with protecting the cotton industry than with keeping the minds and bodies of Americans from being polluted by the scourge of "mary jane". Heaven forbid that hemp-based products take a chunk out of cotton profits, and, oh yeah, marijuana will make you into a lustful, sex crazed, violent hophead. The government was only protecting its innocent, corruptible citizens. Hey you, button that cotton shirt, get your mind right, and go have yourself a brewski...
For those people with MS outside of the United States, Sativex should soon be available to ease your spasticity. I believe it's currently available in commie Canada.
Who knows, maybe soon the United States will actually come up with drug laws that make sense. In the meantime, I think I'll try to uncurl my twisted, spastic arm, hand, and fingers, and go smoke a joint...
Jeez, do I have to smoke a joint? ('m too old but it is cheaper than Canadian Salivex.ReplyDelete
Sativex is available in Canada. 30 sprays for $150 CAD. It has been available for MS since April 2005. I use it. I prefer it to smoking pot because I don't have to hide it from my teens, I know what I'm getting every time (content and dose wise), and it's covered 100% by my extended health care. Here is a Health Canada link about this drug:Sativex I am not permitted to travel to the USA with my Rx because it is considered a "controlled substance" unless I apply to the US Consulate for special consideration. As if I want that red flag attached to my name when traveling. You've got the stem cells, how far behind could Sativex be?ReplyDelete
Kicker: I don't think you're ever too old. The problem I find is that today's marijuana is so much stronger than the stuff that was around when I was a kid (in the 70s) that I really don't enjoy smoking it anymore. It's impossible to just get buzzed, you go instantly to "stoned out of your mind".ReplyDelete
Weeble: have your teams try to sample your Sativex? That's actually pretty expensive, 30 sprays for $150. Does it get you high?
I was prescribed Provigil, hated it, hide the remaining tabs (I keep all left-overs meds for years "in case" and then throw the old things out) fearing kids' friends might find and take!! When I taught EDs(Emotionally Disturbed) one of my Hyper kids was on Ritalin. Mom and Dad used to take it and sell it on his inner-city streets so they could buy their drug of choice. Junkie parents tend to have EDs often.ReplyDelete
spasticity does truly suck, Marc. I have horrible pain in my legs.ReplyDelete
I have often considered trying to buy a joint or two, but I am too afraid I will get caught.
My teens have not tried my Sativex as far as I know. I've had friends and family sample it though. My uncle is a hard core pot-smoker. He took 2 sprays and couldn't leave our fire pit for a while, he couldn't move his but out of the lawn chair, lol.ReplyDelete
It certainly makes me high. THC is powerful. One of the adverse things is that it can effect people with heart arrhythmias, *sigh*. This is probably why I don't like it that much.
Like most drugs, people tend to build a tolerance to the "high" side effects and get great benefit from it without being incapacitated from it.
I have been a pot smoker since my college days. I'm now 53. I was a marathon runner and triathalete for several years. I smoked back then and still finished in the top third in all my races.ReplyDelete
I have read that marijuana also supresses the immune system and can have other benefits for MS patients besides spasticity.
I have PPMS. I was diagnosed 6 years ago but have had symptoms for over 15 years. I take daily Copaxone injections. I have not progressed much for over 6 months. I do not know if it is the copaxone or the marijuana but I don't want to quit either one.
If the marijuana is not helping me physically it is mentally.