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November 30, 2008

MI: Saginaw News: 'Trying to ease my suffering'

Posted by Gary Storck
Sunday, November 30, 2008

The Saginaw News published this article, which begins with a compassionate look at a patient dealing with serious illness who clearly benefits from legal access to medical cannabis. The second half reports on the naysayers and quacks who dismiss medical cannabis as not needed. It's shameful for a physician to close their minds to any potential treatment. To do so with cannabis with its incredible safety and lack of toxicity, when they have patients who could benefit, is nothing short of malpractice.

'Trying to ease my suffering'
THE SAGINAW NEWS click here.
Sunday, November 30, 2008

Unlike former president Bill Clinton, Charles H. Snyder III inhales.

On bad days, he heats up marijuana three times a day. On good days, it's less.

However, on bad days -- when the chronic pain from glaucoma and the rare genetic disorder Nail-patella syndrome becomes unbearable -- the 31-year-old Genesee County resident sniffs more marijuana through an electric vaporizer.

''For seven years, doctors tried to find the right formula of pain pills to help me lead a more normal life,'' said the married father of a toddler daughter. ''They never found the right combination or dosage amount that didn't make things worse. It's not about getting high. I'm not a thug. I'm trying to ease my suffering.''

Snyder estimates he's one of approximately 50,000 Michigan patients struggling with chronic pain who rejoiced when citizens passed the controversial Proposal 1 in the Nov. 4 general election.

When the proposal takes effect Thursday, Michigan will join Arkansas, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington in permitting medical marijuana to treat cancer, glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, chronic pain and HIV/AIDS -- without fear of state prosecution.


Snyder is a member of the Ferndale-based medical marijuana reform advocacy group Michigan Coalition for Compassionate Care.

An unemployed construction worker, he began using marijuana after reading about the relief it provides. Absent or underdeveloped kneecaps and thumbnails characterize Nail-Patella, which causes bone, joint, fingernails and kidney abnormalities.

He began buying it seven years ago from ''underground people I trust.''

He uses a vaporizer to heat the drug to 356 to 392 degrees -- nearly the same temperature as baking a cake -- to release active cannabinoids, but below the point where the heat produces carcinogenic tars and noxious gases.

''There are less than 100 people in mid-Michigan that I'm aware of using marijuana for medical reasons, but who knows for sure, since people are afraid of being put through the ringer or arrested,'' Snyder said. ''For me it's more important to have some type of quality of life, so the fear and danger involved with buying illegal drugs are worth it because I'm taking a more proactive role in my overall well being.''

The proposal allows people to use and grow marijuana to treat certain medical conditions with a physician's authorization. However, users of the mind-altering drug -- also known as cannabis, weed, herb, maryjane, reefer, 'the chronic', pot and blunts -- must register with the state.

Once licensed, patients may possess 2.5 ounces or less of marijuana and cultivate no more than 12 plants in an enclosed, locked facility, according to the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act.


Continues: click here.

Posted by Gary at November 30, 2008 10:41 AM


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