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A-G’s Conference: Medicinal Marijuana; Yay or Nay? Experts Talk

A leading American doctor, who treats his patients using medicinal marijuana, yesterday shared his experience and expertise on legal medicinal marijuana with participants at the 21st Attorney-General’s Conference.
08 Dec 2019 11:39
A-G’s Conference: Medicinal Marijuana; Yay or Nay? Experts Talk

A leading American doctor, who treats his patients using medicinal marijuana, yesterday shared his experience and expertise on legal medicinal marijuana with participants at the 21st Attorney-General’s Conference.

Doctor Joseph Rosado, the owner and chief executive officer at International Medical Consultants Inc, United States of America, led the discussions on the final panel based on “Need for Weed? Legal Medicinal Marijuana”.

He said the top 10 ailments and diseases treated at his clinic in Colorado, United States, using marijuana include, chronic pain; post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) including anxiety, depression and insomnia; crohn’s disease; parkinson’s disease; rheumatic arthritis; fibromyalgia; cancer; epilepsy/ seizures; autoimmune disorders known as lupus; and neuropathy.

He shared stories of mothers, toddlers, aging grandparents, college students, who were cured with legal medicinal marijuana.

Dr Rosado said one person died every 16 minutes in the US due to opioid overdose. This dropped drastically in States where medicinal marijuana was legal.

“The opioid prescriptions for people on medicare have dropped by 14 per cent in States that adopted medical cannabis laws. There has been a decrease of 20 to 25 per cent in opiate related overdoses in medically legal States.

“Counties located in Medical Marijuana legal States reduced monthly alcohol sales by 12.4 percent and that the risks associated with cannabis are fewer than those associated with opiates, benzodiazepines and alcohol.”

Australia:

The chief executive officer of the Victorian Law Reform Commission in Australia, Merrin Mason said the Victorian government had to make a decision after a strong lobbying was done by Australians to have legal medicinal marijuana available.

Fiji:

Doctor Kenton Biribo, an anaesthesiologist at the Fiji National University, said he had given a closed door talk to doctors at the Colonial War Memorial Hospital recently after requests from patients for medicinal marijuana. And he acknowledged that now was a good time to discuss this issue.

Giving a brief history of cannabis, Dr Biribo said marijuana was used for various things, for making clothes, and for medical purposes for thousands of years.

In 1798, marijuana was introduced into western medicine.

Dr Biribo said in 1914, the Narcotics Act was passed in the US based on mass misinformation soon after leading to cannabis being added to the list of illegal substances.

However, he also highlighted that there are potential short and long-term effects of using marijuana.

These include bleeding risk, paranoia, impaired fertility, development of tolerance, and it may take weeks to get through the withdrawal phase.

“There is evidence for low dose cannabis in refractory neuropathic pain in conjunction with traditional analgesics,” he said.

The conference ended yesterday at the InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort and Spa in Natadola.

Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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