Impacts Jeff Sessions’ Recent Crackdown Could Have on Legal Marijuana

By: Admin Published: January 20, 2018

jeff_sessions_marijuanaAttorney General Jeff Sessions and Colorado Republican Senator Corey Gardner went toe to toe over legal marijuana in Colorado on January 10, 2018. The Attorney General has been threatening a federal crackdown on legalized marijuana for some time now, and the Republican Senator, among politicians from both sides of the aisle, takes issue with the Attorney General’s stance. CBS Denver interviewed Adam Orens, Founder of Marijuana Policy Group, about the effect a crackdown might have on Colorado, whose system of handling legalized marijuana is a model for other states and major cities across the U.S. that are learning how to regulate legalized marijuana. Orens states that a federal crackdown could affect the willingness of investors interested in getting involved in the industry, for fear of what increased federal scrutiny could mean to their profits.

Senator Gardner has vowed to continue to block all DOJ nominees from confirmation until the Attorney General Sessions abandons his efforts on marijuana enforcement. Gardner stated that Sessions assured him marijuana would not become a priority once he was confirmed by the Senate, but that has not been the case. Gardner released a statement in which he reiterated that he believed individual states’ rights were being infringed on through the Attorney General’s actions. Even with the Department of Justice returning its focus to criminal prosecution of marijuana, more states are pressing toward legalization. Orens stated he did not believe legalization would be slowed down at all, and that states would continue to move forward with their individual efforts to legalize, despite recent events.

The Senate is currently considering drafting language into the pending appropriations bill to ban the use of federal funds to penalize retail marijuana outlets in states that have passed laws allowing it. During the Obama administration in 2013, a directive known as the Cole memo was issued to federal prosecutors, instructing them to use their prosecutorial discretion not to place priority on prosecuting legitimate marijuana dispensaries and retail outlets in states where cannabis is legalized, but rather to focus on illicit enterprises that sold drugs to children, released marijuana into the black market, operate with criminal gangs, or sell marijuana across state lines. However, the Attorney General’s policy change rescinded that directive. If the Department of Justice holds firm and does not change course on this issue, Congress may have to act to protect states with marijuana laws on the books, by banning the use of federal funds going toward enforcement. This issue is likely to polarize both Democrats and Republicans who favor ending the federal prohibition on marijuana and leaving the question to each state. According to Newsweek, at least a dozen states are poised to consider marijuana legalization this year. The Executive Director for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws stated that he believed the momentum behind marijuana law reform will not only continue but increase as 2018 progresses. With the latest Gallup poll showing 64 percent of American adults favoring legalization of marijuana (including a majority of Republicans), this year could be a game changer.

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The Extended Plant Count – Philosophical Considerations

By: Admin Published: December 28, 2017

Extended Plant CountA concept well known to individuals familiar with the industry, the Extended Plant Count (aka. EPC or Higher Plant Count) seems to be the 800-pound gorilla in the room; an obvious limiting reagent to the industry’s ability to supply the medicinal demands of its patients while offering little legal framework for comfortable navigation of its use by key players in the life cycle of the medical marijuana plant. From the patient who needs them and the doctor who recommends them to the cultivator who grows them, Extended Plant Counts keep people looking over their shoulders.

In the absence of clear State-level guidelines regarding EPCs, patients and their doctors are engaging in the marijuana-mambo, dancing around the topic of how many plants a patient actually needs to meet the demands of their medical condition. The black-hole of data regarding dosing, strain-specific benefit profiles, individual patient metabolism genetics, and about another dozen unknowns further complicates the issue, making it hard to find physicians who are willing to take the dance floor.

Fortunately for the industry, there are pioneers in the field who have taken on the issue of Extended Plant Counts, offering a broad spectrum of potential tools and solutions to give clarity to the otherwise nebulous matter. From the Extended Plant Count Calculator by MedRec to the advice offered by RX MARYJANE here (https://cannabispatientsalliance.org/2016/08/10/why-is-determining-a-patients-plant-count-so-difficult/), key industry members can rest assured that there is a force of advocacy working in the background to facilitate the conversation surrounding Higher Plant Counts now and into the future. And in as much as the tools provided above can be used today to legitimize the process for all, we think there is value to be had in some philosophical exploration by contemplating physician-recommendation habits in the well established realm of Western medicine to what might be used as a decision factor for determining high plant counts in the future.

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How to Apply for Your Medical Marijuana Card in Colorado

By: Admin Published: November 29, 2017

Medical Marijuana for Epilepsy TreatmentApplying for your medical marijuana card is simple, as long as you prepare all the correct information ahead of time. Applications using the online registration process at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment get approved in 1-3 business days, as long as there is no missing or incorrect information. To make the process as easy and painless as possible, we’ve outlined all the necessary information for you below.

Who Qualifies for a Medical Marijuana Card?

Colorado has set forth certain criteria regarding age, residency, and medical conditions that must be met to qualify for a card. Be sure you fall into this set of criteria before applying. These are:

Adults:

  • Be a Resident of Colorado
  • Must be 18 years of age or older
  • Suffer from a qualifying medical condition

Minors:

  • Primary parent must be a Colorado resident
  • Must have a qualifying medical condition

Qualifying Medical Conditions:

  • Cancer
  • Glaucoma
  • HIV or AIDS
  • Cachexia
  • Persistent Muscle Spasms
  • Seizures
  • Severe Nausea
  • Severe Pain
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

What Doctor Can Approve Use of Medical Marijuana?

Not every doctor is eligible to recommend the use of medical marijuana. Be sure your physician meets the following criteria:

  • Physician must be licensed in Colorado and be in good standing.
  • Physician must be a Medical Doctor (M.D.) or a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.).
  • Physician must be registered online to be allowed to submit certifications.

Minor Patients:

  • Minors must see two different physicians and each must submit a certification.
  • Minors suffering from PTSD must have at least one of the following doctors submit a certification – Board Certified Pediatrician, Board Certified Family Physician, or Board Certified Child Psychiatrist. This physician must be part of their primary care team and be the one to diagnose the condition.

What Documents are Needed to Apply?

Colorado requires documentation of who you are and who is caring for you before they will approve the use of medical marijuana. Be sure to have the following information available:

Adults:

  • Colorado Driver’s License or State ID
  • If applying with your Caregiver, they need to provide their Caregiver Registration ID
  • Credit Card or Bank Account & Routing Number to pay for the application fee

Minors:

  • Primary Parent’s Colorado Driver’s License or ID
  • Certified Copy of the Minor’s Birth Certificate
  • Caregiver Registration ID if the parent is not the primary caregiver
  • Credit Card or Bank Account & Routing Number to pay for application fee
  • Documentation of Secondary Parent Status. This can be done through 1) Secondary Parent’s State ID, 2) Certified Copy of Secondary Parent’s Death Certificate, or 3) Copy of Court Issued Sole Custody Order.
  • Notarized Minor Patient Consent Form. This is available for download through the CDPHE website.

Legal Representative of Adult:

  • Patient’s Colorado Driver’s License or State ID
  • Legal Representative’s Colorado Driver’s License or ID
  • Copies of Legal Representative Documentation, such as Power of Attorney or Court Order
  • Caregiver’s Registration ID if the Legal Representative isn’t the caregiver
  • Credit Card or Bank Account & Routing Number to pay application fee

How to Complete and Submit an Application

Once you have doubled checked that all ID’s are current, registration numbers are correct, and documents are certified or notarized, it is time to apply. The CDPHE requires you to create an account through their online system. Follow these steps:

  1. Login – Access to account creation and the application are found on the CDPHE website, here. If you’ve never used this system before, you will need to register.
  2. Click “New” – Both new patients and renewal patients who are new to the online system should click “new” after logging in.
  3. Enter Patient Information – If you plan to purchase your medical marijuana from a dispensary or center, be sure to choose YES when you reach this question.
  4. Add Physician Certification
  5. Enter Cultivation Information – You can skip this step if you will purchase from a dispensary.
  6. Pay the Application Fee

After you finish the application, you will receive an email telling you to login to your account when your card is ready. You can print the card or choose to display it on your phone or other mobile device. You will NOT get a card in the mail when you apply online.

The CDPHE reserves mail-in applications for those who have no access to the Internet. Mailed applications take 6-8 weeks to process.

Application Assistance

If you gather all the necessary information and documentation ahead of time, applying for your medical marijuana card is quick and simple. However, if you still find the process confusing or would like assistance at any point, we are here to help. Please call us at 719-246-0393.

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Increased Plant Counts in Pueblo

By: med_admin Published: September 8, 2017

With the legalization of marijuana use in Colorado comes jurisdictional limits to the number of plants that can be grown in residences. The increased plant counts Pueblo residents are limited to is 12 for those living in an apartment or duplex and 18 for those in a single-family dwelling.

While the Colorado Constitution allows six plants, with three or fewer being mature, flowering plants that are producing a usable form of marijuana, it allows for more if medically necessary. With the extended plant count Pueblo residents are afforded, the law does take into consideration the treatment efficacy medical marijuana provides many patients. Diseases such as cancer, glaucoma, HIV, and AIDS are just some of the medical conditions that patients, caregivers, and doctors recognize as those with symptoms which can be relieved with marijuana use. Medical marijuana also helps alleviate symptoms and conditions that cause severe pain, nausea, seizures, and muscle spasms. The benefits of medical marijuana for those patients in needs of symptomatic relief makes the extended plant count welcome news to many.

One item of note for those wishing to grow marijuana in their homes in Pueblo and remain in compliance with home grow laws, is that growers are required to register with the Pueblo Police Department first: “It shall be unlawful for any patient or primary caregiver to cultivate marijuana until he or she has first registered the location with the Pueblo Police Department and presented his or her state medical marijuana registry identification card to the Police.” Also of note is that growing marijuana anywhere other than one’s primary residence is illegal.

For information on the best marijuana treatments for your condition or to set up an appointment with one of our helpful, knowledgeable, friendly staff members, contact Medical Alternatives Clinics today at (719) 246-0393 or email us at hello@medicalalternativesclinics.com with any questions.

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Extended MMJ Plant Counts in Colorado Springs

By: med_admin Published: August 10, 2017

There is currently a lot of debate and confusion in the marijuana community surrounding the topic of increased or extended plant counts. Colorado Springs residents may not be clear on the rules for MMJ high plant count. Colorado Springs medical cannabis patients have the right to grow additional plants at home, but an ordinance passed in 2016 by the Colorado Springs City Council limits all home grows. This ordinance is making obtaining an approved higher or extended plant count more difficult, if not impossible, to attain. The cap on the number of plants applies to each residence, or “housing unit”, regardless of how many legitimate medical marijuana patients reside in the home.

The Colorado Constitution declares six plants as the baseline, but allows for more if medically necessary. It also allows for the patient and his/her primary caregiver (not necessarily a doctor) to determine the amount of medicine required for treatment of ‘the patient’s debilitating medical condition’. Such conditions are defined as:

  • (I) Cancer, glaucoma, positive status for human immunodeficiency virus, or acquired immune deficiency syndrome, or treatment for such conditions;
  • (II) A chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition, or treatment for such conditions, which produces, for a specific patient, one or more of the following, and for which, in the professional opinion of the patient’s physician, such condition or conditions reasonably may be alleviated by the medical use of marijuana: cachexia; severe pain; severe nausea; seizures, including those that are characteristic of epilepsy; or persistent muscle spasms, including those that are characteristic of multiple sclerosis; or
  • (III) Any other medical condition, or treatment for such condition, approved by the state health agency, pursuant to its rule making authority or its approval of any petition submitted by a patient or physician as provided in this section.

Determining the amount of marijuana that is medically necessary to treat a patient can be a complicated process. For recommendations on which cannabis products may be best for your situation, contact Medical Alternatives Clinic today at (719) 246-0393 in Colorado Springs with any questions or to set up an appointment with one of our helpful, knowledgeable, friendly Colorado Springs MMJ Doctors. We are here to assist you in any way we can, including obtaining an extended plant count, and will happily provide you with a copy of any paperwork necessary for your personal records.

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PTSD now qualifying ailment for Medical Marijuana

By: Admin Published: August 3, 2017

PTSD or Pоѕt Trаumаtiс Stress Diѕоrdеr is a соmmоn psychiatric ailment affecting many people around thе wоrld. Anу inсidеnt thаt has саuѕеd trаumа in thе реrѕоn оr which had the аbilitу tо injurе оr саuѕе near dеаth can triggеr PTSD ѕуmрtоmѕ in individuаlѕ.

What it iѕ

PTSD оr Pоѕt Traumatic Stress Diѕоrdеr results because оf аnу trаumаtiс inсidеnt a person mау have ѕuffеrеd. It iѕ соmmоn for аnу реrѕоn to fееl ѕаd, аnxiоuѕ, wоrriеd оr fеаrful аftеr a particularly stressful оr traumatic еxреriеnсе. With timе thеѕе iѕѕuеѕ tend tо disappear. Hоwеvеr, in ѕоmе саѕеѕ, it соuld continue tо mаnifеѕt itself years lаtеr аѕ PTSD. Painful memories because оf аn еxtrеmеlу оvеrwhеlming trаumа can rеѕult in a реrѕоn bеing unable tо move on with hiѕ оr hеr lifе. Whilе thе gеnеriс реrсерtiоn iѕ thаt PTSD lаrgеlу affects ѕоldiеrѕ rеturning frоm wаr, PTSD саn in fact affect anyone. PTSD is tурiсаllу mоrе in unрrеdiсtаblе оr unсоntrоllаblе еvеntѕ thаt hаvе caused trаumа. In mоѕt cases thе ѕуmрtоmѕ оf PTSD арреаr within a fеw dауѕ оr hours оf thе event. Hоwеvеr, ѕоmеtimеѕ, it саn take uр tо ѕеvеrаl mоnthѕ or wееkѕ fоr thе ѕignѕ to manifest thеmѕеlvеѕ. Cоmmоn PTSD саuѕеѕ can bе because оf tеrrоriѕt аttасkѕ, wаr, ѕuddеn death оf lоvеd оnеѕ, рlаnе оr car сrаѕhеѕ, assault, rаре, рhуѕiсаl аbuѕе, kidnap, natural disasters, childhood nеglесt еtс.

Cоmmоn Symptoms

Sоmе оf thе соmmоn symptoms аѕѕосiаtеd with PTSD inсludе thоѕе ѕuсh аѕ еxреriеnсing thе event rереаtеdlу, еxреriеnсing mоrе emotional triggers аnd аnxiеtу, flаѕhbасkѕ оf thе trаumаtiс event, high lеvеl physical reactions tоwаrd the еvеnt ѕuсh аѕ rapid breathing, роunding heart, muscle tension, nausea, ѕwеаting еtс. Thе раtiеntѕ оf PTSD аlѕо uѕuаllу tend tо аvоid visiting thе ѕitе оf thе incident to аvоid соnfrоnting thе traumatic experience аgаin. Thеѕе persons also fееl dеtасhеd frоm ѕосiеtу аnd are numbеd еmоtiоnаllу. Viсtimѕ оf PTSD also bеliеvе thаt thеу will be limited in rеѕuming lifе’ѕ nоrmаl асtivitiеѕ. PTSD раtiеntѕ find it difficult tо еithеr fаll аѕlеер or rеmаin аѕlеер. They wоuld аlѕо find it tоugh tо concentrate оn things, would experience sudden anger оutburѕtѕ and gеt easily ѕtаrtlеd. In more extreme саѕеѕ оf PTSD the реrѕоn might еvеn еxреriеnсе suicidal tеndеnсiеѕ.

Bеnеfitѕ of Medical Mаrijuаnа for PTSD

Thе benefits of uѕing medical mаrijuаnа have рrоvеn tо bе оf help for a numbеr оf соnditiоnѕ thаt include PTSD, and currently mеdiсаl mаrijuаnа offers ѕаfеr аnd more nаturаl орtiоnѕ аnd аltеrnаtivеѕ fоr mаnу раtiеntѕ аѕ opposed tо psychotherapy and рhаrmасоthеrару trеаtmеntѕ thаt invоlvе thе uѕе оf аntidерrеѕѕаntѕ and benzodiazepines, whiсh are often ineffective and mау rеѕult in орiоid аnd рrеѕсriрtiоn drug addiction.

Medical Mаrijuаnа works bу еliminаting соnnесtiоnѕ to mеmоriеѕ thаt аrе раinful. This аѕресt iѕ vаluаblе for PTSD раtiеntѕ thаt еxреriеnсе flаѕhbасkѕ whеn thеу have аѕѕосiаtiоnѕ with visual, auditory оr olfactory (smell) memories that аrе connected with the event оr events that саuѕеd thе PTSD. Bу blоtting оut any аѕѕосiаtеd mеmоriеѕ, those suffering frоm PTSD mау ѕее imрrоvеmеnt with ѕуmрtоmѕ.

Cоlоrаdо Law SB 17-17

Thе lаw gоvеrning mаrijuаnа use, SB 17-17, wеnt intо еffесt June 5, 2017, аnd it approves the uѕе оf mеdiсаl саnnаbiѕ for militаrу veterans and оthеrѕ suffering from PTSD. Veterans will hаvе ассеѕѕ tо medical mаrijuаnа in order to ѕuррlеmеnt their current trеаtmеnt system undеr thе dirесtiоn оf trusted health саrе providers.

Thiѕ rесеnt lеgiѕlаtiоn hаѕ now made it possible fоr those experiencing PTSD tо rесеivе thе hеlр and treatment they nееd tо combat thе соnditiоn. Nоw Colorado jоinѕ 20 other ѕtаtеѕ thаt have аррrоvеd medical marijuana fоr trеаtmеnt of PTSD аnd related mеdiсаl iѕѕuеѕ.

Thе bill wаѕ рrороѕеd earlier in 2016, аnd thе June legislation and ѕigning into law bу the Cоlоrаdо governor established the imрlеmеntаtiоn оf PTSD trеаtmеnt Colorado lаwѕ.

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Can a Minor Get a Medical Marijuana Card in Colorado?

By: med_admin Published: June 30, 2017

In the state of Colorado minors can legally use medical marijuana based on specific criteria if they are being treated for a qualifying medical condition. First, the minor must reside in Colorado and have a parent or legal guardian also residing in Colorado. The minor’s parent or legal guardian must provide consent in writing to serve as the minor’s primary guardian. Consent must be from each parent residing in Colorado. Two medical marijuana doctors must have concluded and documented that the minor applicant has been diagnosed with a qualified debilitating medical condition. One of the doctors must have a bona fide physician-patient relationship with the minor. Additionally, one of the doctors consulted must have explained the possible risks and benefits of medical use of medical marijuana to the minor applicant and each of the minor applicant’s parents residing in Colorado.

To apply for the card, the Colorado resident applicant must have a valid Social Security number and include the documentation about the qualifying medical condition, the physician certification forms, a copy of the applicant’s Colorado driver’s license, and a $15 check or money order with the application. If you have any questions about some common reasons to get a medical marijuana card, schedule an appointment, or anything else please call us at (719) 246-0393.

The use of medical marijuana by minors has been successfully documented in Colorado through the story of Charlotte Figi. Charlotte was just three months old when she experienced her first seizure. The seizures became exceedingly frequent, with Charlotte experiencing up to 300 grand mal seizures a week, leaving her little body battered and weak, and causing her to be hospitalized often. The Figis spent years looking for an effective treatment that wouldn’t further diminish her quality of life. After extensive research, desperation, and a leap of faith, the Figis decided to try cannabis, due to the debilitating effects of the seizures, the frequency, and side effects from treatments they had already tried.

When Charlotte’s condition responded favorably to cannabis, the family sought out the Stanley Brothers, one of the state’s largest marijuana growers and dispensary owners. The brothers created a CBD-rich hemp oil extract, known as Charlotte’s Web, that her parents introduced to Charlotte’s diet, and which significantly reduced the seizures she experiences. Today, Charlotte is a thriving, active child enjoying life like any other child her age, and only experiences a few seizures a month, almost solely in her sleep.

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Groups that Help Veterans Access Medical Marijuana

By: med_admin Published: June 8, 2017

For many veterans, medical marijuana can mean the difference between being able to function normally, cope with daily stress, and handle difficult medical situations, or suffering, often in silence. There is a growing movement to convince the federal government to remove cannabis from the Schedule I substance list, and permit research into its effectiveness in treating such medical situations such as chronic pain, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a condition many veterans deal with as a result of their time serving our country.

In early 2017, the American Legion, our nation’s largest veterans service organization, sent a letter to the White House requesting a meeting with President Donald Trump to discuss critical veterans’ issues, including suicide and opiate addiction, and asking the administration to “clear the way for clinical research in the cutting edge areas of cannabinoid receptor research”. In 2016, the Department of Veterans Affairs noted in the VA Suicide Prevention Program’s document entitled “Facts about Veteran Suicide” that an average of 20 veterans died from suicide each day in 2014.

American Legion officials stated that they are not advocating the legalization of marijuana, but rather the rescheduling of cannabis so that quantifiable, scientific medical research can be done that might support the use of marijuana in a medical environment. Officials believe there is compelling anecdotal evidence which supports the efficacy of medical marijuana in treating veterans with traumatic brain injuries (TBI), PTSD, and other medical issues.

Several groups exist that offer support to veterans in their quest to access medical marijuana for treatment. One such group is Weed for Warriors, a California-based organization which works with cannabis growers, who donate their products to the organization, and groups like the Santa Cruz Veterans Alliance, to provide veterans with medical marijuana information and access to free medicine. The Weed for Warriors Project was started in the San Francisco Bay area by a Marine veteran who found relief from disabilities connected to his military service through medical marijuana and the fellowship of other likeminded veterans within the cannabis community.

Another group supporting the call for further research into the medical use of marijuana is the non-profit organization, Veterans Cannabis Project. This organization offers education, advocacy, research support and partnerships with likeminded organizations, as well as promoting career opportunities for veterans within the growing marijuana industry. Their stated purpose is to “ensure that veterans today and in future generations can improve their quality of life through access to medical marijuana”.

With veterans representing just 7% of the American population but accounting for 20% of suicides in our nation, it is obvious to many that the various assistance and pharmaceutical prescription programs currently available for veterans are not working. Many of the drugs prescribed to treat depression and suicidal thoughts are highly addictive, and carry with them their own set of problems. The groups promoting medical marijuana as a natural, viable treatment believe it can prevent suicide and save lives by helping to restore the confidence, mental health, and ability to lead normal, healthy lives.

For recommendations on which cannabis products may be best for your situation, contact Medical Alternatives Clinic today at (719) 246-0393 in Colorado Springs, or email us at info@medicalalternativesclinics.com with your questions, or to set up an appointment. Our MMJ doctors in Colorado Springs are here to assist you in any way we can and will provide you with a copy of any paperwork necessary for your records.

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Relief Without the Haze: The Magic of Marijuana Topicals

By: med_admin Published: May 19, 2017

Marijuana topical treatments are extremely popular with people of all ages seeking the healing effects of marijuana, but who would rather do without the “high”. Since our skin is our largest organ, it only makes sense to take advantage of a form of pain relief that is applied directly on the surface of the skin. New and interesting ways of consuming cannabis to relieve chronic pain are being developed daily, and these medicinal, topical treatments are providing relief to some of the most unlikely consumers, including senior citizens. Our medical marijuana doctors in Colorado Springs and Pueblo have seen great results with marijuana topicals in many patients.

The healing properties of marijuana topicals are available in a wide variety of applications, including balms, ointments, lotions, creams, oils, and salves, all imbued with the active pain relieving ingredients marijuana is known for, and designed to bring relief to seniors without the “haze” associated with ingesting marijuana via smoking or eating. Because they are non-psychoactive, marijuana topicals are a great choice for treating chronic, localized physical pain, like the stiffness, swelling, and achy joints that come with arthritis.

Topical applications containing cannabis are absorbed through the skin and offer a solution for localized pain, joint and muscle soreness, tension, and inflammation. When a person’s range of motion becomes limited due to the pain and swelling of arthritis, marijuana topicals can provide a practical alternative to traditional medications for treating these symptoms, due to the anti-inflammatory and pain relief abilities of these radical new therapies.

Marijuana topicals work by binding to the body’s CB2 receptors found throughout the body. These receptors are activated by cannabis compounds, and even if a topical treatment contains active THC, the user will not experience the intense “high” associated with ingesting cannabis, as the cannabinoids only penetrate to the system of CB2 receptors, and do not enter the bloodstream. The exception to this rule is the transdermal patch, which does deliver cannabinoids to the bloodstream.

In addition to finding a new way to relieve the pain and stiffness of arthritis, senior citizens are discovering that marijuana topicals can provide relief of headaches and muscle cramps. Many manufacturers are blending natural scents such as peppermint, lavender, and wintergreen into their topical products to produce a treatment that not only provides pain relief, but leaves a pleasant scent that lingers on the skin after application. Contrary to popular belief, which is changing daily with more and more states legalizing medical marijuana, these cannabis-infused topical treatments can be extremely effective in alleviating chronic pain, and will not become physically addictive with repeated use.

For recommendations on which marijuana topicals may be best for your chronic pain, contact Medical Alternatives Clinic today at (719) 246-0393 in Colorado Springs or Pueblo with your questions, or to set up an appointment. We are here to assist you in any way we can, and will provide you with a copy of any paperwork necessary for your records.

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Colorado Officially Approves Medical Marijuana for PTSD

By: med_admin Published: May 10, 2017

Colorado has added Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Acute Stress Disorder to the list of qualifying conditions, and the first psychological conditions, eligible for treatment by medical marijuana, as reported in the April 28, 2017 online edition of 5280, Denver Colorado’s Mile High Magazine. Colorado state lawmakers decided that physicians should be allowed to recommend medical marijuana in treating PTSD symptoms in adults, but also decided that there should be additional safeguards in place when it comes to allowing children under the age of 18 to be similarly treated.

Although there are several forms of treatment for the disorder, including various types of therapy, exercise, dietary interventions, and medications, currently there is no cure for PTSD, and Colorado has one of the highest suicide rates in the country. Prior to the passage of Senate Bill 17-017, Colorado was the only state to formally deny a request to add PTDS to the list of approved conditions for the use of medical cannabis. One of the issues bogging the bill down was language allowing medical marijuana to be recommended for patients under the age of 18 who were diagnosed with PTSD.

An amendment to the bill sponsored by Representative Timothy Leonard stipulates that two physicians, one of whom must be a board-certified pediatrician, a board-certified family physician, or a board-certified child and adolescent psychiatrist who is part of the family’s medical care team, must prescribe medical marijuana for any person under the age of 18, and each of the patient’s parents residing in Colorado must consent to this treatment in writing to the state health department, with one parent consenting in writing to serve as the patient’s primary caregiver.

On the Colorado General Assembly website SB17-017, which was sponsored by Senator Irene Aguilar and Representative Jonathan Singer, a summary of the bill states that “The bill creates a statutory right to use medical marijuana for a patient with acute stress disorder or post-traumatic stress disorder. The bill creates the same rights, limitations and criminal defenses and exceptions as the constitutional right to use medical marijuana.”

5280 reports that Matthew Kahl, executive director of the 501(c)4 nonprofit Veterans for Natural Rights, has been a vocal advocate for this policy change. After serving two tours in Afghanistan, Kahl was tormented by intense PTSD flashbacks and says marijuana is the most effective treatment he’s found to ease his otherwise debilitating symptoms. He was among a cohort of veterans who pleaded their cases for using marijuana to ease PTSD symptoms before the Colorado Board of Health in July 2015. He and a group of veterans and other individuals living with PTSD also advocated for SB17-017, and brought a lawsuit against the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) to appeal the Board’s 2015 decision.

With the passage of SB17-017, Colorado joins twenty other states, Guam and Puerto Rico in approving PTSD as a qualifying medical condition for access to medical marijuana.

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