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Insurance companies offering coverage to marijuana smokers.
Posted: 07 April 2010 01:48 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 31 ]
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asanta - 07 April 2010 12:12 AM
Write4U - 06 April 2010 10:46 PM

Turn over a rock .........
I hope it is not an indication of the general professional ethics in medicine. Were there records, have you seen them? Were they medically fraudulent? Was it even a licensed doctor? What were the patient’s options. Drink himself into oblivion?
I have a problem with the thought that doctors do not act in their patient’s best interest.

I’m talking about medical dispensaries in the CA bay area. I do not know who these ‘doctors’ are, I have no reason to see the charts, I only know what was reported by the news media in an effort to clamp down on the proliferation of these clinics which drew an unsavory criminal element, who targeted them for easy cash. Why would you jump to ‘drink himself into oblivion’ as the only other option? That is the equivalent argument to the theist’s ‘we don’t know, so goddidit.’ No the prescriptions were legal, but the ethics of the prescribers were questionable. As for doctors acting in the patient’s best interest..come on, doctors are human too. The majority are excellent to competent, and then you have the others, just like any other occupation.

OK, a real life story. A friend of mine, Vietnam vet, has a neurological injury, which gives him pain and tremors. He used to drink that pain and the tremors away. Then he discovered that smoking a jay had the same relaxing and pain killing effects as the booze, but did not impair his daily functions and allowed him to sleep (without the stupor and hang over). He now has a medical prescription for marijuana and has shown a marked improvement in his general well being. Of course he could also get himself a prescription for an addictive narcotic, but why??
Would a good doctor deny him this much more benign and effective (according to my friends physical experience) medicine, in favor of an addictive narcotic or refuse and let him use alcohol for his condition?

[ Edited: 07 April 2010 01:57 AM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 07 April 2010 02:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 32 ]
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Write4U - 07 April 2010 01:48 AM

OK, a real life story. A friend of mine, Vietnam vet, has a neurological injury, which gives him pain and tremors. He used to drink that pain and the tremors away. Then he discovered that smoking a jay had the same relaxing and pain killing effects as the booze, but did not impair his daily functions and allowed him to sleep (without the stupor and hang over). He now has a medical prescription for marijuana and has shown a marked improvement in his general well being. Of course he could also get himself a prescription for an addictive narcotic, but why??
Would a good doctor deny him this much more benign and effective (according to my friends physical experience) medicine, in favor of an addictive narcotic or refuse and let him use alcohol for his condition?

Okay, a real life story. My girlfriend and her husband had a darling little boy, until he turned two and received his MMR, after which time he began to suffer severe symptoms of autism. It would have been better for him to have the measle, mumps and reubella, since that poisonous shot gave him autism.

That is a true story, but the conclusions were not. The MMR did NOT give him autism. Now your friend may very well be helped by marijuana, just as the appropriate infection can be helped with penicillin, but penicillin does not cure nausea, a cut finger, cancer, joint pain unrelated to infection. Penicillin has it’s place and deserves further study. But it is not the one true cure for everything. This is how it is portrayed in my area from the users of medical marijuana, AND the government is too damn irrational and paranoid to allow studies on it’s uses. Anecdote is a start, but it is NOT a scientific study and I would be remiss as a health care professional to give treatment based on anecdotal evidence, I operate in a science based field.

[ Edited: 07 April 2010 12:51 PM by asanta ]
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Posted: 07 April 2010 11:06 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 33 ]
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Study Finds No Link Between Marijuana Use And Lung Cancer

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/05/060526083353.htm

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Posted: 07 April 2010 12:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 34 ]
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That study is interesting, and reassuring, but unfortunatly we must always look at the total balance of the evidence, not simply individual studies. A quick PubMed search finds studies showing an association between marijuana use and lung cancer and bronchitis (as well as other conditions), an association between marijuana use and lung cancer, a possible risk of psycosis triggered by cannabis, and strong association with transitional cell carcinoma. There are at least as many studies which did not find such risks, so the balance of the evidence is pretty close on casual inspection. Obviously, a detailed systematic review looking at both quantity and quality of the evidence would be better able to determine if there is a clear patttern one way or the other, but I’m not aware of any such review.

That being the case, there is plenty of evidence to suggest serious risks. This should be no surprise since tthe only treatments that have no risks at all are the ones that aren’t doing anything. If marijuana turns out to have positive benefit/risk balance for certain patients, that will be a great thing. But at this point the evidence isn’t clear that that’s the case, so it’s not really any different from many other CAM therapies, it’s just more widely popular for political reasons.

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Posted: 08 April 2010 11:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 35 ]
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asanta - 06 April 2010 10:39 PM
Write4U - 06 April 2010 10:11 PM

I submit that the participation by more and more doctors indicates a greater acceptance in the medical world, which in turn provides pertinent and relevant data in consideration of the expanded use of marijuana for medical purposes and the legalized (taxed) use for recreational purposes.
Recreationally (as well as Spiritually)? Well its a longggggggggggg story spanning thousands of years.

It takes a little more than just culling medical records for people who admit to marijuana use, that is NOT good NOR a reliable study. A study needs to be double blinded and repeatable. Anecdote and conformation bias does NOT a good study make. The scripting of marijuana on demand is NOT an ad hominum. It was proved here in the Bay Area when people went into the clinics to ask for prescriptions for the most bogus reasons they could think of, and ALL of them came out with a prescription, including the chief of police, who was part of the sting.

I begin by saying that I don’t question the general effectiveness of double blind tests.
But how do you conduct a double blind test on marijuana?  How would you administer the drug and the placebo? What placebo would you use? What effects would or could you look for?

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Posted: 08 April 2010 01:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 36 ]
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First you would have to have the ability to legally PERFORM the test. If scientist were able to figure out a way to double blind an acupuncture experiment, I’m sure double blinding a marijuana test can be done. THEN they have to decide WHAT they are looking for, you don’t ‘throw everything against the wall and see what sticks’. That is not good science. You first have to form a testable falsifiable hypothesis.

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Posted: 08 April 2010 04:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 37 ]
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asanta - 08 April 2010 01:47 PM

First you would have to have the ability to legally PERFORM the test. If scientist were able to figure out a way to double blind an acupuncture experiment, I’m sure double blinding a marijuana test can be done. THEN they have to decide WHAT they are looking for, you don’t ‘throw everything against the wall and see what sticks’. That is not good science. You first have to form a testable falsifiable hypothesis.

I don’t think that your example of acupuncture is relevant here. It deals with a whole different and testable area of medicine.
There are already THC pills available. They must have been tested or they could not be used. The only difference is in the delivery system. I agree that smoke as a delivery system is probably the worst. But that is unrelated to the effectiveness of the drug itself.
I just cannot imagine what any test will prove, other than what is already well documented, both scientifically and anecdotally. Perhaps the establishment of a minimum dosage which still produces the desired effect might be useful, but it is very unlikely that one can “overdose” on THC. I have never heard of a single case of marijuana use which resulted in death from an overdose, unless it was in combination with other, much more dangerous drugs.
As to the illegality. If the AMA demanded that, in view of the pervasiveness of marijuana use, it is a medical imperative that we test and quantify the properties and effects of marijuana, I have no doubt that an “accommodation” can be made. There are plenty of otherwise illegal narcotics marketed by Big Pharma. If illegality was an obstacle, how were they able to test and prescribe these dangerous and addictive drugs?
I have a deep suspicion that Big Pharma does not want marijuana made legal as it can be easily grown in a flower pot and would upset the marketing of hundreds of “approved” over-the-counter and prescription drugs and remedies currently used for the same conditions which marijuana alleviates. The legalization of marijuana would result in loss of millions if not billions of dollars by BPh.
But legalization and taxation of marijuana might well generate millions if not billions of dollars in much needed tax revenue.

[ Edited: 08 April 2010 04:29 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 08 April 2010 05:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 38 ]
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You CAN test and research opiods and other addictive drugs. Not sure about research on Meth. The government (this is NOT connected to ‘big Pharma’ btw), allows only a limited amount of research on marijuana each year, and those scientist have priorities as to what they want to study. The government has put marijuana in a special category. It is NOT a conspiracy, much as people would like to think it was. The laws are unreasonable and antiquated and need to be changed. Yes, I have given the THC mediation to chemotherapy patients, I know about that.

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Posted: 08 April 2010 06:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 39 ]
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asanta - 08 April 2010 05:59 PM

You CAN test and research opiods and other addictive drugs. Not sure about research on Meth. The government (this is NOT connected to ‘big Pharma’ btw), allows only a limited amount of research on marijuana each year, and those scientist have priorities as to what they want to study. The government has put marijuana in a special category. It is NOT a conspiracy, much as people would like to think it was. The laws are unreasonable and antiquated and need to be changed. Yes, I have given the THC mediation to chemotherapy patients, I know about that.

Asanta, thank you for indulging my desire for clarification. I have never had opportunity to discuss this rationally until now.

Any idea why marijuana is in a “special category”?
Also, you mentioned that in order to perform meaningful tests, a “falsifiable hypothesis” must be formed. What makes marijuana so special that a falsifiable test is difficult to devise. Perhaps the effects of marijuana are so benign that it is impossible to devise such a test (other than the long range effects of THC use, which of course cannot be verified without using it). At least no one has to worry about adverse interactions with other drugs, side effects, addictive properties, effectiveness. It is like trying to devise a falsifiable test for water as a cure for thirst. Is it any different from a person feeling nauseous, but is no longer nauseous after smoking a jay?

Mind, I am not advocating the use of marijuana, but there are certain other principles involved. What gives government the right to outlaw any natural substance without clear proof of harm to the user or environment? The burden of proof should fall to the government. Here we have a victimless crime, based on unsubstantiated and unprovable evidence of harm. If a sativa seed were to fly into your back yard and propagated into a plant, one can be incarcerated for possession without any further proof of criminality. Strangely, you can have a housefull of the most toxic substances, but they carry the “good housekeeping seal” so that’s ok.
Jeez…. zipper

[ Edited: 08 April 2010 08:00 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 08 April 2010 08:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 40 ]
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Write4U - 08 April 2010 06:58 PM

Asanta, thank you for indulging my desire for clarification. I have never had opportunity to discuss this rationally until now.

Any idea why marijuana is in a “special category”?

Because of unreasonable government hysteria from, I believe,the 1920s and solidified in the 1960s.

Also, you mentioned that in order to perform meaningful tests, a “falsifiable hypothesis” must be formed. What makes marijuana so special that a falsifiable test is difficult to devise. Perhaps the effects of marijuana are so benign that it is impossible to devise such a test (other than the long range effects of THC use, which of course cannot be verified without using it). At least no one has to worry about adverse interactions with other drugs, side effects, addictive properties, effectiveness. It is like trying to devise a falsifiable test for water as a cure for thirst. Is it any different from a person feeling nauseous, but is no longer nauseous after smoking a jay?

EVERY hypothesis has to be falsifiable, otherwise it is not a good hypothesis. Wikipedia explains it better than I can, here is an excerpt:[Falsifiability or refutability is the logical possibility that an assertion can be shown false by an observation or a physical experiment. That something is “falsifiable” does not mean it is false; rather, that if it is false, then this can be shown by observation or experiment. The term “testability” is related but more specific; it means that an assertion can be falsified through experimentation alone.

For example, “all men are mortal” is unfalsifiable, since no finite amount of observation could ever demonstrate its falsehood: that one or more men can live forever. “All men are immortal,” by contrast, is falsifiable, by the presentation of just one dead man. Not all statements that are falsifiable in principle are falsifiable in practice. For example, “it will be raining here in one million years” is theoretically falsifiable, but not practically so.

Mind, I am not advocating the use of marijuana, but there are certain other principles involved. What gives government the right to outlaw any natural substance without clear proof of harm to the user or environment? The burden of proof should fall to the government. Here we have a victimless crime, based on unsubstantiated and unprovable evidence of harm. If a sativa seed were to fly into your back yard and propagated into a plant, one can be incarcerated for possession without any further proof of criminality. Strangely, you can have a housefull of the most toxic substances, but they carry the “good housekeeping seal” so that’s ok.
Jeez…. zipper

That is a law question, which I am not qualified to answer!  wink

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Posted: 08 April 2010 11:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 41 ]
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Write4U - 08 April 2010 06:58 PM

Any idea why marijuana is in a “special category”?
Also, you mentioned that in order to perform meaningful tests, a “falsifiable hypothesis” must be formed. What makes marijuana so special that a falsifiable test is difficult to devise. Perhaps the effects of marijuana are so benign that it is impossible to devise such a test (other than the long range effects of THC use, which of course cannot be verified without using it). At least no one has to worry about adverse interactions with other drugs, side effects, addictive properties, effectiveness. It is like trying to devise a falsifiable test for water as a cure for thirst. Is it any different from a person feeling nauseous, but is no longer nauseous after smoking a jay?

Mind, I am not advocating the use of marijuana, but there are certain other principles involved. What gives government the right to outlaw any natural substance without clear proof of harm to the user or environment? The burden of proof should fall to the government. Here we have a victimless crime, based on unsubstantiated and unprovable evidence of harm. If a sativa seed were to fly into your back yard and propagated into a plant, one can be incarcerated for possession without any further proof of criminality. Strangely, you can have a housefull of the most toxic substances, but they carry the “good housekeeping seal” so that’s ok.
Jeez…. :zip:


`
This.

I read a story the other day about a medical marijuana shop in Montreal where some of the neighbouring merchants began complaining ~ why?  because the MM place was attracting “healthy-looking young buyers” !  Not a criminal element or trouble-causing people, just ‘healthy-looking’. The point being that if people are using the mj for some kind of ‘medical problem’, it’s acceptable, but if they’re perfectly healthy and using it for their own ‘enjoyment’, it’s a ‘problem’!

*mind-boggled*

`

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Posted: 09 April 2010 01:48 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 42 ]
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Asanta
Wiki: “That something is “falsifiable” does not mean it is false; rather, that if it is false, then this can be shown by observation or experiment. The term “testability” is related but more specific; it means that an assertion can be falsified through experimentation alone.”

That tends to support my position. How can you falsify the hypothesis that water quenches thirst. It always does. Of course the hypothesis that “only” water quenches thirst is falsifiable. There are many ways to quench thirst. After five, the bars are full of people quenching their thirst. I believe the same principles hold true for marijuana. No one claims that marijuana cures or heals any medical condition, it just offers relief from certain symptoms and discomfort. What’s to falsify?

[ Edited: 09 April 2010 02:05 AM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 09 April 2010 08:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 43 ]
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Write4U - 09 April 2010 01:48 AM

Asanta
Wiki: “That something is “falsifiable” does not mean it is false; rather, that if it is false, then this can be shown by observation or experiment. The term “testability” is related but more specific; it means that an assertion can be falsified through experimentation alone.”

That tends to support my position. How can you falsify the hypothesis that water quenches thirst. It always does. Of course the hypothesis that “only” water quenches thirst is falsifiable. There are many ways to quench thirst. After five, the bars are full of people quenching their thirst. I believe the same principles hold true for marijuana. No one claims that marijuana cures or heals any medical condition, it just offers relief from certain symptoms and discomfort. What’s to falsify?

I don’t think you understand the concept of falsifiablity…

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Posted: 09 April 2010 10:02 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 44 ]
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W4, falsifiable does not mean just that something can be proved false, but rather it is a method of determining whether a premise is meaningful.  Two examples I’ve given before are: 1. It will rain or it will not. 2. There are alternate universes to ours in different dimensions.  Neither of these are falsifiable so they are both meaningless.  Number one must be true in all cases so it isn’t conveying any information.  Number two cannot be shown to be false in any way at present, so for now, it’s meaningless. 

Go back and read Asanta’s first use of falsifiablity with this concept in mind.  I think you’ll see that the premise that water quenches thirst doesn’t apply to her example.

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Posted: 09 April 2010 11:19 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 45 ]
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Write4U - 09 April 2010 01:48 AM

How can you falsify the hypothesis that water quenches thirst. It always does.

Let’s take the hypothesis “water always quenches thirst”. It is falsifiable because in case water can be shown to not quench thirst one time, the hypothesis is false. However, the way you’ve stated it, “water quenches thirst” (always or sometimes?), seems to me to be a little too unspecific to be falsifiable, and thus, not a good scientific hypothesis.

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