a serious question that may sound stupid

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Deborah614
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a serious question that may sound stupid

Postby Deborah614 » Fri Jul 03, 2015 9:34 pm

I have a friend with MS who has managed her pain, appetite and sleep with marijuana butter she cooks up herself. We live in Indiana and can't get a prescription for legal medical marijuana. She's used her butter for as long as 20yrs and her doctors have never mentioned finding it in her blood screens. I am starting 4-6 months of chemo in a couple weeks and she recommends I use her butter, but I'm afraid my insurance company will drop me if illegal marijuana is detected in a blood draw and put in a report. My friend insists they can't test for anything except what's necessary for the chemo. Will I be risking my policy by putting the butter on my morning English muffin? I've tried to google for an answer, but too many weirdo opinions.
Thanks for any thoughts or knowledge,
Deb.
dx 12/17/14
stage 2 rectal cancer T3N0M0
standard treatment 28 days radiation w/xeloda, surgery, 8 rounds Folfox
22 shots neupogen 32 days in hospital for infections
60 years old
mother of 6, grandmother of 10, wife of 1 for 35 years
Jeremiah 29:11
05/28/15 APR, Barbie butt, permanent colostomy
May 2016 Cat scans NED!
May 2016 mammogram
June 2016 invasive ductal carcinoma breast cancer left breast stage1
August3 '16 mastectomy with reconstruction, genetic screening scheduled

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ktwmn
Posts: 350
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:41 am

Re: a serious question that may sound stupid

Postby ktwmn » Fri Jul 03, 2015 9:39 pm

No, the oncologist doesn't order THC detection along with cbc, liver function tests, or CEA draws. Now if you work for the military or a fascist who orders random peeing in a cup, that's a different story....
Dx 7/11, Stage IIIc CC
12 txs Folfox 8/2011-2/2012
MSS, KRAS-mut G12D
NED until 3/2015, mets to liver and peritoneum
April-December 2015: 15 txs folfiri+avastin
Liver mets resolved; pelvic met remains
January-May 2016: folfox+avastin; allergic rxn to oxi
June-August 2016: 5FU+avastin
October 2016: looking into immuno trial
January 2017: maintenance chemo xeloda + avastin

Nik Colon

Re: a serious question that may sound stupid

Postby Nik Colon » Fri Jul 03, 2015 9:44 pm

Idk, my FIL is a long time mj user and is honest with docs and has since been denied other meds because of it. It is going to be legal soon here in MN for medicinal use but as of now he has been denied other meds because of it. I don't know if or how the legal testing goes, but I would suggest not disclosing it for now. Idk if that will make a difference or not tho.

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exaussie
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Re: a serious question that may sound stupid

Postby exaussie » Fri Jul 03, 2015 9:49 pm

No worries my son used Marijuana the whole time in treatment. Believe me insurance doesn't want to order more tests cause it costs them!
DS 26 yrs old diagnosed 6/13 T3N2aM1b
Resection 6/13
6 rounds chemo folfax
12/13 Fissure
hernia surgery 12/13
5 months break
Maintenance chemo 3/14
Crazy growth. Liver failing. Folfox and vectibex 7-29-14
Chemo failure Hospice 8/26
Left us 8/28

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GrouseMan
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Location: SE Michigan USA

Re: a serious question that may sound stupid

Postby GrouseMan » Fri Jul 03, 2015 10:15 pm

It is risky - but a specific test would have to be performed to find it and that test likely is not routinely run unless ordered or you are suspected of using it. Indiana is a very conservative state so I don't know what that likely hood of them randomly screening citizens for "drug abuse". It is up to you if you are willing to take the risk or not. Doesn't sound like you are, so I wouldn't. Its as simple as that. There really isn't any need for you to take her butter in my opinion. You haven't started your chemo yet and the drugs they typically give to manage nausea usually do a pretty good job, unless you end up like many here that may have had to go beyond the first or second line therapy and need something to take the edge off the cumulative side effects. My wife has been on chemo continuously since August 2013. It has for the most part been pretty easy for her. She goes in get her infusion, gets her pump and drives to work. Next day it's again of to work, the third day - off to the chemo center for her disconnect, then off to work. By Thursday she starts to wind down, and the fatigue hits her. She looses some appetite, but not much. She is just a little pickier about what she will eat for a couple of days. The discomfort from the HFS has been fleeting for her and while on the pump her fingers might start to tingle, then after a few days its gone. Some treatments are worse than others in that regard, but for the most part pretty good for her. Its become a rather boring routine once every three weeks now. If you look in my signature you will see she is stage IVb, it doesn't usually get too much worse than that as a starting diagnosis. She is on Chemo for as long as it will control her cancer.

Everyone is different in how these drugs affect them. Some worse than others. But its manageable. We don't know what stage you are or what treatment you are going to have. Usually its FOLFOX and sometimes (as in my wifes case) they will add Avastin. This is a cocktail of three drugs Oxaliplatin (oxi), Leucovorin, and 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) The Oxaliplatin is the nasty one. It causes some might interesting side effects. First Bite Pain, sensitivity to cold, tingling fingers. And along with the 5-FU is usually responsible for the nausea. You may not be able to get through all the courses of treatment with 100% of the oxi, as it may drop your blood counts too low, and you may have to delay a treatment or reduce the amount. This is not unusual.

The Oxaliplatin is always given as an infusion. 5-FU and Lecovorin as well. But sometimes they will substitute Xeloda for 5-FU, its what is called a Prodrug and may be taken orally, and in the liver its converted ti 5-FU. Some like this rater than having the pump for 48 hours, as its more convenient for some. My wife isn't good about taking pills on a schedule, as she is a busy engineer. Travels from construction site to construction site. For her the pump is easy and she more or less ignores it and goes about her business. As a former research chemist that did anti-cancer research - I like the pump better as it maintains a good constant blood level during that 48 hour period. You have to take the pills for a longer period of time, and depending on your diet the blood levels may vary a great deal from one day to the next. Also I understand that Xeloda for some folks leads to more HFS (Hand & Foot Syndrome), a painful condition of the hands and feet, making it hard to hold things and to walk.

So - right now - I would wait and see what you may be in for rather than panic or stress over medical marijuana. In all honesty - the pharma industry spent many hundreds of millions of dollars looking for a use for the compounds in marijuana, and didn't find anything all that better than drugs already available to treat nausea and pain.

Good Luck with your decision.

GrouseMan
DW 53 dx Jun 2013
CT mets Liver Spleen lung. IVb CEA~110
Jul 2013 Sig Resct
8/13 FolFox,Avastin 12Tx mild sfx, Ongoing 5-FU Avastin every 3 wks.
CEA: good marker
7/7/14 CT Can't see the spleen Mets.
8/16/15 CEA Up, CT new abdominal mets. Iri, 5-FU, Avastin every 2 wks.
1/16 Iri, Erbitux and likely Avastin (Trial) CEA going >.
1/17 CEA up again dropped from Trial, Mets growth 4-6 mm in abdomen
5/2/17 Failed second trial, Hospitalized 15 days 5/11. Home Hospice 5/26, at peace 6/4/2017

sadysue
Posts: 986
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Location: Charleston, TN

Re: a serious question that may sound stupid

Postby sadysue » Sun Jul 05, 2015 6:06 pm

It is definitely detectable up to 30 days after using but unless a specific test is ordered, it would not be detected in the tests your onc will be ordering. It's nobody's business but your own if you want to try it. I used it for pain management and nausea (not every day) and it definitely did help me. Good luck!
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

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chrissyrice
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Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2010 8:44 am
Location: Atlanta, Georgia

Re: a serious question that may sound stupid

Postby chrissyrice » Sun Jul 05, 2015 8:00 pm

I love butter on my toast! :mrgreen:
DX 10-31-09 Surgery 12-1-09 Sigmoid Colon
Stage IIIb T3,N2,MX; Chemo Feb 2010-Aug 2010; 4 rounds Folfox; 8 rounds 5FU +LV
12/2010 PET/CT Scan, Cancer Free
7/2012 CT Scan NED 2 years
10/2013 NED 3 years
8/2014 NED 4 years
Recurrence 6/2015: iliac lymph node(s)
8/2015 Surgery: 3 cm tumor removed+iliac artery graft
3/2016 CT Scan Stable
6/2016 Stable
9/2016 Stable
12/2016 Stable
3/2017 Stable
Recurrence 6/2017
12/2017 Surgery removed all cancer w/ clean margins
07-27-2018 Cancer-free for 7 months

DBF
Posts: 323
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Location: New York

Re: a serious question that may sound stupid

Postby DBF » Sun Jul 05, 2015 8:21 pm

It's a good question. When I filled out my medication list at my cancer center, I listed marijuana as one of my medications and "half a brownie" as the dose. :-) Then later, I had a situation where my medical records were requested and I realized that was listed on there.

As for blood tests, I agree that insurance companies don't do more than they need to. I really don't think you have to worry, and if it's helping you, that's great. I'd butter up the toast if I were you. :-)
6/13 Dx @ 29 Wks pregnant, 42 yo
Adenocarcinoma, mucinous
7/13 C-sec/col resec/part. hysterectomy
8/13 Pulm embolism
8/13 Spread to liver
9/13 Liver resection
FOLFOX
CEA UP
ADAPT: Xeloda/Celebrex
2/14 oopherectomy
10/15 obstruction surg
10/17 Scar tissue removal/vsg surg
2019: NED :D
2020: NED
Mom to 3 boys: 22, 11 & 7

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elise
Posts: 1519
Joined: Fri Apr 27, 2012 5:09 pm
Location: Ontario (Canada)

Re: a serious question that may sound stupid

Postby elise » Mon Jul 06, 2015 4:49 pm

I use it daily and it never came up in any test. And I do find it helps a lot. I was also worried about insurance finding out but decided the risk was worth taking. Personally I'm all about baking with it :) Chocolate and vanilla really offset the taste! :wink:

Elise
2012
Feb - Stage 2 (T3 N0 M0) CC @ 30
Mar - R hemicolectomy, 18 LN
May-Nov 6 - Chemo (8 Xeloda)
2013
Feb - NED
2014
Feb - NED
May - Stage 4 - 1 liver met @ 32
Jun - Liver resection
Oct - CLEAN SCAN
Aug-Jan - FOLFOX 5 rounds, 5FU X 6
2015
Ap, Oct - NED
2016
Mar - NED

Deborah614
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Joined: Tue Jan 27, 2015 10:24 am
Facebook Username: Deborah Melchi

Re: a serious question that may sound stupid

Postby Deborah614 » Tue Jul 07, 2015 12:04 am

Thank you for responses to my question. I've spent hours reading this forum since my diagnosis and I felt certain I'd get sound info here.
I've lost nearly 30 lbs since first round of chemo & radiation & surgery. I didn't have that weight to spare, which is the main reason I've considered my friends offer for her homemade butter. I see the oncologist tomorrow about adjuvant chemo. Hoping that goes better for me than the rest of the treatments have. Yikes.
Blessings,
Deb.
dx 12/17/14
stage 2 rectal cancer T3N0M0
standard treatment 28 days radiation w/xeloda, surgery, 8 rounds Folfox
22 shots neupogen 32 days in hospital for infections
60 years old
mother of 6, grandmother of 10, wife of 1 for 35 years
Jeremiah 29:11
05/28/15 APR, Barbie butt, permanent colostomy
May 2016 Cat scans NED!
May 2016 mammogram
June 2016 invasive ductal carcinoma breast cancer left breast stage1
August3 '16 mastectomy with reconstruction, genetic screening scheduled


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