The weed medicine, marijuana is considered by many as a magic fix to the discomfort caused by debilitating medical conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, AIDS and glaucoma. The newer member of the group is PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder.
PTSD is an anxiety disorder experienced by people who have witnessed a traumatic event at some point in their life and have been affected by the stress ever since. The worst among the symptoms of PTSD are recurring flashbacks, nightmares and resultant lack of sleep. The use of a variation of medical marijuana is found to have beneficial effects on patients with post-traumatic stress disorder.
The US senate has come up with a bill that makes PTSD patients eligible to obtain medical marijuana cards. According to Senator Laurie Monnes Anderson, D-Gresham, “We have something that will take care of that and allow them to not have flashbacks, to be able to sleep and to not have nightmares. That person should be allowed to have (medical marijuana)”. The Senate Bill 281, which was passed on Thursday, is on its way to the House for legal approval.
The bill was not unanimously accepted by the senate. The opinions were divided in favor and against the inclusion of PTSD in to the list of ailments that can use medical marijuana. Many of the senate republicans including Sen. Alan Olsen, R-Canby, who was also a former narcotics investigator, expressed their disbelief in the magical curative effects of marijuana when it comes to PTSD.
“You know you could sit down with a bottle of Jack Daniels and listen to Charlie Daniels and probably get the same effect,” said Mr. Olsen. Another senator Jeff Kruse, R-Roseburg, expressed the opinion that medical marijuana should essentially be treated like any other medicine in the market. He claims to have relied on this belief in voting against the bill in the Senate. Sen. Kruse introduced an amendment, which requires the renewal of the registry identification card by medical marijuana users in every 60 days interval. The amendment did not pass owing to increased support in favor of the bill.
The Democratic lawmakers however were convinced by testimonies from veteran patients who stated that medical marijuana has been of immense help to them in dealing with the nightmares and other symptoms associated with PTSD. Whether the weed medicine will become legally available to millions of patients suffering from PTSD and related symptoms are yet to be seen.