Medical marijuana

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Igotlucky
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:43 pm
Location: California

Medical marijuana

Postby Igotlucky » Tue Oct 16, 2012 9:39 pm

Greetings. I am on my second round of Xeloda and have been experiencing severe nausea, loss of appatite, joint/muscle pain and hand and foot syndrom but mostly on hands. I am very symptomatic, so lucky me I get to experience most of the side effects of Xeloda...yay me...not. I was taking 8mg of Zofran for nausea but didnt find any relief so I decided to use some left over Marinol I had from chemoradiation therapy and that helped some. I haven't been taking anything for pain as I do not want my body to become dependant on narcotics. With my previious experience I was on Dilaudid, Fentanyl and Oxicontin. I stopped each on my own cold turkey and withdrawls where aweful. I had to pop the dilaudid here and there for relief until I no longer needed it. With that being said, I saw my onc today and he suggested medical marijuana. I don't know the first thing about that. So does anyone know if health insurance covers that? Is it expensive? and has anyone taken it? and if so, did it relief your symptoms and were you able to function?
I turned my oncs offer down because I dont have enough info and haven't done any research on it. I tried google but I didn't find their sources reliable. It seemed as though people posting were using for recreational purposes. I want to hear from people experiencing what I am, having cancer, surgeries, radiation and chemotherapy and not from those who use it for recreational purposes. Any advice/suggestions will be appreciated.
Thank you
Igotlucky
35y/o F
dx3-22-12
StageIIrectalca T3N0M0
Xeloda+radiation4-05-12 - 05-18-12
resection/loopedileostomy06-29-12
Home07-03-12
PathologyNED:D
ileostomy takedown:08/17/12
Home08-22-12
Chemo09-03-12 Xeloda 1,000 bid 14d on/7d off for 6mo

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BrownBagger
Posts: 7954
Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:56 pm
Location: Central NYS

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby BrownBagger » Wed Oct 17, 2012 8:04 am

It works very well. Since you're in California, you should be able to get a legal supply. Not sure of the cost, but I suspect if you can't afford it, there are probably programs to supply it to those in need, for free. We have a member, Rick, who is also in Cali and seems very knowledgeable about the topic of medial marijuana, so hopefully he will check in and tell you exactly what you need to do.

As someone who has used cannabis to combat nausea and other chemo side effects, I can attest to its effectiveness. It works immediately and completely, in my experience.

Good luck!
Eric, 58
Dx: 3/09, Stage 4 RC
Recurrences: (ongoing, lung, bronchial cavity, ribs)
Major Ops: 6/ RFA: 3 /bronchoscopies: 8
Pelvic radiation: 5 wks. Bronchial radiation—brachytheray: 3 treatments
Chemo Rounds (career):136
Current Chemo Cocktail: Xeloda & Erbitux & Irinotecan biweekly
Current Cocktail; On the Wagon (mostly)
Bicycle miles post-dx 10,477
Motto: Live your life like it's going to be a long one, because it just might, and then you'll be glad you did.

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Kathryn in MN
Posts: 2970
Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2009 12:25 am
Facebook Username: Kathryn Finn-Blume
Location: Minnesota & Mexico
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Re: Medical marijuana

Postby Kathryn in MN » Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:09 am

I would use it in a heartbeat if it were legal in MN. I tried to smoke it once - made me vomit. But after that I felt much better. So the illegal route doesn't work for me - I need a vaporizor or edible option.

Marijuana is so much less damaging than the other drugs we take for nausea and vomiting and pain. It is a no-brainer in my book. I am frustrated that we can't accept medical Marijuana as an option everywhere.
CRC AUG09 Age 47
Sig Res T4a N2a Mx, KRAS mut codon13
Mets bones & nodes
FOLFOX, FOLFIRI, Avastin, Radiation
Irinotecan, Zaltrap & STAR RFA
APR13 pleurisy & ascites - more chemo & draining
http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/kathrynblume

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pollo65
Posts: 1564
Joined: Thu May 20, 2010 3:11 pm
Facebook Username: pollo2
Location: central valley, calif

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby pollo65 » Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:34 am

I am in northern California and have my medical marijuana card, though it is not cheap, I use very little and it does two HUGE things for me 1. works wonders for nausea 2. It does truly stimulate appetite---If you find a knowledgable provider it can also help with pain. My experience is that it relaxes peristalisis and cramping also. I vaporize (around $100) and use very small amounts. I do not like the "feeling" I get with Vicodin or oxycontin, both of which nauseate me, to me mmj is much milder and makes me less "spacy" than anything else.
pollo 65
CC 1/6/09
r. hemi-colectomy 1/7/09
32Ln biopsied, 28 positive
met to aorta
chemo 12 rounds
done 9/09 3 scans clear
1/11 1 met to aorta
micro cluster to peritoneum
4/11 / 9/11 scan clear
4/12 scan clear
10/12 scan clear
Iri+avastin
chemo break

sadysue
Posts: 979
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 6:59 pm
Location: Charleston, TN

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby sadysue » Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:22 am

I did not get a script from my onc for it but a friend (who's mom had cancer years ago and used it successfully) suggested I try it...and I did. It's the ONLY thing that relieved neuropathy in my feet and allowed me to fall asleep without feeling thousands of "bugs" running up and down my legs. I only smoked it before bedtime but it's gone and I have no clue where to get it. I am sorta embarassed to talk to my onc about it, especially at my age! I feel like the Old Hippie has arisen in me! :roll:
Rectal dx 4/2011 (Stage 3B - T3N1M0)
5FU/Rad - daily/6 wks ending 6/2011
Surgery 8/19/2011
Finished 8 rounds Folfox 2/2012
Ileo reverse and port out 3/2012
NED

Angiemarie2000
Posts: 573
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2012 6:29 pm
Facebook Username: Angela.boles
Location: Eden Prairie, MN

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby Angiemarie2000 » Wed Oct 17, 2012 1:25 pm

@ kathern. My onc here in MN said there are loop holes to get it here, like the pill form. I'd love to e able to take this, but it's against my companies policy and dont want to get fired. :evil:

Angie
5/12- @ 37 DX IV KRASmt
5/12- R. Hemi
6/12- Folfox/avastin-(Bad Reaction)
6/12- xeliri-7rds
CEA-DX @ 80 then 11,10,7,14,25,210,340,540,900
12/12-R. Ovary removed
01/13- folfox 4 rounds
03/13- folfox failed, in liver failure, starting regorafebin.

Tim&Jen
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2012 5:11 pm
Location: Greenville SC

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby Tim&Jen » Wed Oct 17, 2012 1:51 pm

My husband just filled a prescription for Dronabinol/Marinol 5mg capsules last week.
Our insurance company covered it.
It did help him with the nausea and helped him fall asleep.
Jennifer
Husband (45) father of 4 boys (18,15,10,6)
Dx 6/12 stage IIIc T3N2M0
col res 6/12,14-20 nodes
no mets, normal cea
8/15/12 began Folfox-12 cycles

Surroundedbylove
Posts: 3118
Joined: Tue Dec 16, 2008 6:43 am
Location: Seattle

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby Surroundedbylove » Wed Oct 17, 2012 2:42 pm

And a caution - just because a state says it is legal (like california) does not mean that is legal under federal laws. Recently there was major news here of the feds arresting people under the federal laws - for marijuana possession and trafficking.
Surroundedbylove

Rectal Cancer @ 43, '08
Clinical: T3,N2a,MX (IIIB)
6 wks XELOX & radiation
LAR, colonic j-pouch, & temp ileo '09
Surgical: ypT3,ypN0,ypMX (0 of 20 nodes)
FOLFOX; XELOX
Ileo Takedown '09
SIL Dx 2014 - Rectal T3

Rick7
Posts: 322
Joined: Sun Mar 15, 2009 5:38 pm
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby Rick7 » Thu Oct 18, 2012 2:47 am

IgotLucky,

I am in the middle of my Colonoscopy prep (Thursday), so I only briefly read your post. I will try to re-read later.
I am certain that insurance will not cover it. It can be expensive, but you probably need very little anyway.
Also, there are some dispensaries and individuals that will help out cancer patients if you ask.

The pills are not the same as the real thing.
Get a vaporizor or edibles - no need to smoke it and give yourself more problems.
Your Onc suggested it to you??? Awesome.

I wish I would not have waited until the end of treatment to give it a try.
I have a freezer full of "Brownies" if you are near L.A.

Rick
CC DX 1-7-09 at age 40 - Stage IV, T4-N1-M1
Surgery 1-16-09 - Folfox6 Feb-Aug 2009
Clear scans - PET/CT 9-09, CT 3-10, CT 9-10
Head MRI 3-11, CT 9-11
Head CT 2-12, PET/CT 9-12

scottyg
Posts: 135
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2012 6:40 pm

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby scottyg » Thu Oct 18, 2012 11:31 am

I live just north of Seattle. Just after I was diagnosed I went and got my MMJ paperwork. There are a lot of dispensaries in Seattle. The first one I went into I did not feel very comfortable at all. This almost put me off of the whole thing. The next place I went to was completely different. These people were very knowledgeable. There are different variety's of MMJ that have different effects. Growers crossbreed different variety's to achieve different effects. After trying a couple of different types I find for me a relatively low thc content and a higher cbd sativa works very well at combating nausea and not really making me high or tired. It takes very little for me to achieve the results I want. Just a puff or two. MMJ is a complex plant. I think it is a shame that the feds will not allow any real scientific research to be done.
DX Nov 11
Stage 4
6 Folfox + Avastin Dec 11 - Feb 12
Surgery March 15 Took part of Colon and Part of Liver
Folfox + Avastin May 12 - July 12
NED!!! Yippee!!!!

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Kathryn in MN
Posts: 2970
Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2009 12:25 am
Facebook Username: Kathryn Finn-Blume
Location: Minnesota & Mexico
Contact:

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby Kathryn in MN » Thu Oct 18, 2012 12:02 pm

Marinol pills are available everywhere by prescription, I think. My daughter brought up the subject with my oncologist. He said that he's found the marinol isn't very effective for most patients, but the real thing helps more. He winked at my daughter and made another comment that let me know that he is behind it if I want to try. But there is no way for him to assist in our state.

I haven't tried the marinol - maybe I should, just to see if it would help. My youngest child was the biggest anti-drug person I ever knew. And he was even against medical Marijuana. Over a year ago he offered to get me his friend's vaporizer and product for it. After witnessing what I go through, he must have changed his mind. I told him that there was no way I wanted him involved in breaking the law - even for a good cause. I really appreciated his willingness to help, but no way would I let him.

When I think of what Aloxi, Decadron, Emend, Zofran, Dilaudid, Morphine, Fentanyl and all the other toxic things I put into my body to help with nausea, vomiting and pain do to my body and organs, I can not think of one good reason why I shouldn't be allowed to try medical Marijuana instead. It is much less toxic.

As for the problems with feds. I would take my chances. They wouldn't want to mess with me. If I lived in a state where medical Marijuana was legal and the feds came after me, you can bet there would be a LOT of publicity in the media. They would be shamed beyond belief. I would absolutely take that on. They do need to be taken on. And they do seem to have backed off lately. I'm disgusted that our federal government has been involved in situations where states have legalized it. Go after the cocaine and meth dealers - leave the legal medical Marijuana patients and dispensaries alone. Spend our tax dollars wisely.
CRC AUG09 Age 47
Sig Res T4a N2a Mx, KRAS mut codon13
Mets bones & nodes
FOLFOX, FOLFIRI, Avastin, Radiation
Irinotecan, Zaltrap & STAR RFA
APR13 pleurisy & ascites - more chemo & draining
http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/kathrynblume

Igotlucky
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:43 pm
Location: California

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby Igotlucky » Fri Oct 19, 2012 9:51 am

I just popped 2-5mg of marinol. Been nauseated since yesterday and the Zofran is of no help. I'm seriously considering MMJ. I'll call my onc today to see what he says. The only problem is the $ situation, I hope it's not too expensive. Oh wait! There is another problem...my husband lol. Like Katherine's son, my husband is against mj. Hopefully he changes his mind like your son did. my husband has no clue what meds I'm on especially not the marinol, ha.
Oh and Rick, I do live in L.A. :)
Igotlucky
35y/o F
dx3-22-12
StageIIrectalca T3N0M0
Xeloda+radiation4-05-12 - 05-18-12
resection/loopedileostomy06-29-12
Home07-03-12
PathologyNED:D
ileostomy takedown:08/17/12
Home08-22-12
Chemo09-03-12 Xeloda 1,000 bid 14d on/7d off for 6mo

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BrownBagger
Posts: 7954
Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:56 pm
Location: Central NYS

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby BrownBagger » Fri Oct 19, 2012 10:34 am

I've always strongly believed that no prosecutor--federal, state or local--nor any law enforcement agency, is going to hassle cancer patients on chemo using a generally-recognized beneficial medication to ease their symptoms. It just ain't gonna happen, whether you live in a MM-legal state or not. Remember, these people serve the public & they have to stand for re-election. Read the papers. We're not the ones who get busted for drugs.
Eric, 58
Dx: 3/09, Stage 4 RC
Recurrences: (ongoing, lung, bronchial cavity, ribs)
Major Ops: 6/ RFA: 3 /bronchoscopies: 8
Pelvic radiation: 5 wks. Bronchial radiation—brachytheray: 3 treatments
Chemo Rounds (career):136
Current Chemo Cocktail: Xeloda & Erbitux & Irinotecan biweekly
Current Cocktail; On the Wagon (mostly)
Bicycle miles post-dx 10,477
Motto: Live your life like it's going to be a long one, because it just might, and then you'll be glad you did.

Igotlucky
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:43 pm
Location: California

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby Igotlucky » Fri Oct 19, 2012 4:37 pm

So it's about 6hrs now that I took the marinol. I felt really high about 9am, I still feel a tiny bit high but I do feel better overall. I haven't been able to eat other than half a bagel in the am b4 the xeloda( I had to force it down). My body aches but not as bad. I'm just now feeling relieve from the nausea. If it wasn't for the marinol I would probably still be in bed but instead I'm up and cooking. With no appetite though. Maybe later ;)
Igotlucky
35y/o F
dx3-22-12
StageIIrectalca T3N0M0
Xeloda+radiation4-05-12 - 05-18-12
resection/loopedileostomy06-29-12
Home07-03-12
PathologyNED:D
ileostomy takedown:08/17/12
Home08-22-12
Chemo09-03-12 Xeloda 1,000 bid 14d on/7d off for 6mo

hannahw
Posts: 2098
Joined: Sat Mar 22, 2008 4:35 pm

Re: Medical marijuana

Postby hannahw » Fri Oct 19, 2012 4:53 pm

There's an initative here in Washington St to legalize, lots of law enforcement types endorsing it, including a former federal prosecutor and both of our sheriff candidates. My Dad has never used it, but I every cancer patient I know that has used it has had good results. You could try it and stop if you don't like it, although as others haven't pointed out, it's expensive and sometimes the feds seem to like to step in and make a fuss about it.

I do have to ask, with respect to narcotics, do you have a history of addiction? If not, the risk of addiction to medication like fentanyl is actually very low if you follow the prescription. Also, when stopping, why would you stop cold turkey? That seems like a recipe for making it tough on yourself. There are lots of meds, including seizure meds, that require a taper. My Dad had to taper off a seizure med. It was a pain in the ass in some ways, but he got off it with no withdrawals and no seizures. If you don't have a history of addiction you might want to talk to your doc about pain meds. I think your doc could probably reassure you that there are safe ways to take pain meds that help manage pain effectively without addiction.
Daughter of Dad with Stage IV CC


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