Twenty-five states now have medical marijuana laws. Provisions of the laws vary widely. Restrictions are common in terms of the number of medical conditions that are covered by the law, how geographically accessible medical marijuana is in terms of who can sell it and how many dispensaries there are, the qualifications and training of those who are allowed to prescribe it and so on. Financial barriers exist too—despite the fact that medical marijuana requires a prescription, insurance companies are not required to cover it and U.S. health insurance companies don’t.
Many pain patients want to try marijuana, but for many it is not legal where they live or they can’t find a doctor to prescribe it or they can’t afford it. Others are afraid to try and prefer to stick with a known commodity—their opioids. Despite all the obstacles, many pain patients are using marijuana, legal or not, to cope with their pain.
Here’s what some pain patients have to say about it, in the form of comments on my blog posts and Facebook posts related to marijuana:
“Five lower back surgeries …I REPLACED ALL Opiates… I use Marijuana medicine that works stronger than any RX opiates without the danger of death.”
“Every person is different and what may work for some, may not work for others. I’m living proof that MJ and CBD Cannabis saved me and my digestion. Forget the drugs. Green all the way can replace opioid pain killers and still give much needed pain relief.”
“I have tried both, sorry pain meds help me, not marijuana.”
“I [have been] in so much pain every day for the last 25+ years. I got so tired of all the pain pills making me nauseous every day…somedays are worse then others but MM has never made me sick. Smoking or eating it helps with pain joint & muscle spasms / sleep / headaches…I have fibromyalgia / cfs / spine problem / lower back surgery / and neck surgery. Getting ready for another soon and pain pills help. I just got tired of taking them and throwing up and not being able to eat.”
“I don’t have to read this I know exactly which one is better, marijuana! I have fibromyalgia which it works wonders for but I also just had surgery. After the nerve block wore off I was in such excruciating pain, enough to put a gun to my head. Vicodin, oxycodone didn’t take the pain away. I smoked a joint and my pain eased so much I was able to calm down enough to get my mind right plus it helped me sleep through the night.”
“[I use it for fibromylgia] and love it! I’m on no other meds! It helps with soooo much besides the pain … Also headaches, nausea, eating, going to the restroom, sleeping, fatigue, stress, anxiety, and a lot more!“
“I [use medical marijuana] and it’s the best thing ever. Pain, nausea, asthma all helped by it. ❤”
“Pills are the worst, they just add on more side effects, mess up your stomach & other organs? No thank U, marijuana is the best of everything.”
“As a cancer survivor I [find] cannabis is much better than opioids and less addicting.”
“Well I have fibromyalgia. I have had it for 16 years. I have been on pain meds and now I’m on medical marijuana. Yes pot is not legal, but if you get your card you’re legal to smoke it. As for the high feeling, it makes your pain numb so you can’t feel it anymore and that for me is a blessing cuz I have a lot of other issues that it helps me with as well….and pain pills will get you high too…you can’t get addicted to pot like you can pain pills!”
“Marijuana does NOT help all kinds of pain. In fact, it makes my migraines worse. I’m not against it, and I truly believe it helps so many things, but it has never helped me with pain.”
“Marijuana helps me tremendously with my fibromyalgia pain. However, I also have migraines, and…it doesn’t help the migraines.”
“My friend has been suffering for decades, tried everything under the sun!!! Just got her marijuana script and its working!!!!”
“For me the Norco 10-325 helps with acute sciatic pain. The cannabis helps with muscle spasms and nausea. So both it is.”
“The right strain replaced OxyContin and hydrocodone for me. Plus CBD oil (which IS legal in all 50 states).”
“I have fibro and have started marijuana and it does help me with a lot of pain. I wish it was legal for all in pain.”
“It helps with my fibro. I don’t smoke it, but do edibles and under my tongue.”
“Works for me. I’m happy and feel like my quality of life has improved a great deal. Thank goodness I live where it’s legal.”
“Weed intensified my pain.”
“Marijuana works….I swear…it works for me & I have a lot of pain!!!!!!
“I have fibro, and I’m telling you now, IT WORKS FOR THIS WOMAN. AND I KNOW A LOT OF PEOPLE IT DOES HELP. SHOULD BE LEGAL HERE AS IT IS IN A LOT OF STATES. WAKE UP PEOPLE AND TRY IT FOR YOURSELF BF YOU RUN IT DOWN!!!!!
“I have fibromyalgia, PTSD and bipolar. I smoke marijuana every day…it helps me all the way around.”
“I’ve also tried any and all forms of marijuana and it gives me severe panic and allergic reactions. Plus makes my migraines ten times works. The opioids are the only thing that gets me out of bed and walking.”
“I’d use it (again) in a quick minute. Didn’t need anxiety meds or pain meds until after I stopped. I’d love to be able to take less meds. Make it legal and I’m there.”
“I have fibromyalgia and chronic migraines and chronic nausea. The opioids help my fibro pain, but I use CBD oil for my migraines and nausea and it helps tremendously in that area. I don’t smoke pot because I don’t like the way it makes me feel, the CBD oil doesn’t have the THC in it so I am able to use it just fine. They need to go ahead and legalize marijuana in every state. A lot of people benefit [from] it. Every person is different, while pot works for some, the opioids work for others.”
“I was on oxy for 7 years for lupus, fibro and other issues but now cuz we think the opioids caused it I have nephritis which means now I need a new kidney. Finally after years and years I’m on medical marijuana and I’d have to say it’s maybe not a cure all for pain but it isn’t going to kill me faster”!!
“I was diagnosed with fibro in 2003 along with arthritis, stenosis of the neck and a herniated disc in my back. I was walking with a cane and I could not get up out of a chair by myself. I could not even drive anymore. In 2013 I started smoking marijuana. I got my life back. I threw my cane away. And I can drive a car again. I don’t need anyone’s help anymore. I can take care of myself. I thought my life was over. I am 53yrs old and I would not go back to taking all the meds and shit they had me on. The strongest thing I take now is an aspirin. I was too young to sit in a chair and wither away. I tried everything to stop the pain but nothing worked till I tried marijuana. It literally saved my life”
“Absolutely!! I tried all the prescription meds for Fibro and had very serious side effects. Blood pressure spike, palpitations, etc. I live in Massachusetts which legalized medical marijuana a couple of years ago and it has been a life saver. Relieves the tension in my muscles so I can function better and I’m down to Tramadol instead of Vicodin and Soma 4 times a day.”
“I use medical Marijuana for fibro, I can hardly get out of bed without it.”
“I have been on medical marijuana for 2 years, I’ve changed my diet to eating raw and I have seen the change, I’ve come off all meds but 2, pain patches and pills, but today I went to pick up my RX. & the patches were going to cost $603.00 for four patches, really. Even with insurance, who’s has money like that to spend, plus I get better and faster relief from medical marijuana. They need to make it legal for all medically. “
“Pot doesn’t do enough for my pain but works great with my pain meds.”
“I became unable to tolerate any opiates. So now it’s MMJ and anti-inflammatory drugs. CBD takes away a good portion of my nerve pain.”
“I’ve tried both and both work to relieve pain- but when the natural method costs more than my food for a week- why even legalize it – no one can afford it.”
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