Colorado board votes no on allowing medical marijuana for PTSD

The Colorado Board of Health voted 6-2 — amid shouts, hisses and boos from a packed house — not to add post-traumatic stress disorder to the medical conditions that can be treated under the state’s medical marijuana program.

The board voted Wednesday against the recommendation of the state’s chief medical officer.

A dozen of the veterans who testified said cannabis has saved their lives. Many said drugs legally prescribed to them for PTSD at veterans clinics or by other doctors — antidepressants, antipsychotics, opioids and others — nearly killed them or robbed them of quality of life.
“It is our brothers and sisters who are committing suicide every day. We know cannabis can help. We’re not going to go away,” said John Evans, director of Veterans 4 Freedoms…

The American and Colorado psychiatric associations do not support it, said board member Dr. Ray Estacio, an internist at Denver Health and associate professor in medicine at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus…

“Blood is on your hands,” one audience member shouted after the board voted not to make Colorado the 10th state to allow medicinal marijuana use for PTSD…

Wolk said listing PTSD as a treatable condition would increase transparency and reveal actual usage, shedding light on its effectiveness and reinforcing a physician-patient relationship for many users.

Many veterans are self-medicating with recreational marijuana or using medical marijuana ostensibly as pain treatment, although it is really for PTSD, he said.

Currently allowed uses of marijuana include pain (93 percent of recommendations), cancer, epilepsy, glaucoma, muscles spasms, multiple sclerosis, severe nausea and wasting disease (cachexia).

Dr. Doris Gundersen, a psychiatrist who spoke at the meeting, said only 4 percent to 5 percent of the state’s physicians recommend medical marijuana to patients. About 15 physicians make 75 percent of the recommendations, she said. The state has roughly 14,000 licensed doctors…

One of the state-funded medical marijuana investigators, Sue Sisley, who is looking at effects on veterans’ PTSD, said federal policy on marijuana is a prime reason research is scant. It will take at least four years for her study, she said, because the team has been delayed in getting the study drug, still illegal under federal law, from the authorized supplier — the U.S. government…

2 thoughts on “Colorado board votes no on allowing medical marijuana for PTSD

  1. Once again, they use the “there’s no scientific evidence that it works argument, just like for long-term opioids, but they don’t mention there’s no proof that it doesn’t work either.

    When the government makes drugs like marijuana and psilocybin illegal, that also makes them inaccessible to do research on. This way, they can MEVER be proven effective. How convenient!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I suppose by “scientific evidence,” they mean a placebo-controlled trial. And if I was a veteran suffering from PTSD, I would not join a research trial with the potential of treating me with a placebo. That’s just cruel. Especially if I could find bud somewhere else besides a research study. So I have to wonder how hard it’s going to be to find volunteers for a placebo-controlled study. At the slow rate of this kind of “scientific” research, the medical industry will never be satisfied.

      The studies should be about testing different levels of THC and other CBDs in strains and which work the best, specifically for PTSD. I can’t even imagine how long it will be before we see a study like that.

      Liked by 1 person

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