Re-Leaf for Ulcerative Colitis (UC)

Dear Friends,

This is encouraging.

Rachel was diagnosed with severe ulcerative colitis (UC) four years ago — specifically, pancolitis, which inflicts disaster throughout the colon.  Her symptoms were numerous and painful.  She endured bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping, malnutrition, joint pain, and nausea.  She was chronically fatigued.  Her psychological wellbeing was badly damaged:  she was depressed, anxious, and always fearful of the flare-up that could occur anywhere, anytime.   Whenever she left home she carried a mini backpack in case of accidents.  The first thing she checked for in any outing was the location of the bathroom.

Rachel was urged by her doctors to have a colostomy because her condition was so dangerous.  She refused, instead beginning a series of treatments that were not stunningly effective in relieving her UC.

For over a year now Rachel has been prescribed and is taking Imuran, an autoimmune suppressant, that seemed to help stabilize her UC.  Unfortunately for Rachel, Imuran negatively affected her liver function, causing her severe liver pain, abcesses in the liver, autoimmune hepatitis, and fat streaks.  As humans cannot live without a functioning liver, Rachel knew this was a serious problem.

Eight months ago her doctors, who were concerned — even convinced — that the UC was accompanied by Crohn’s Disease, recommended again (and Rachel refused again) a colostomy.

Almost eight months ago, around the same time that her doctors encouraged her to have that life-altering colostomy surgery at age thirty, Rachel became certified for medical marijuana and commenced smoking cannabis every day, intermittently throughout the day and evening.  She was unable to make the three-month blood-work appointment her doctors had scheduled after her previous appointment.  Six months after obtaining her medical marijuana certification, however, Rachel went in to have her blood levels checked.  She hoped to stop taking Imuran, and she was justifiably concerned with her compromised liver functions.

At that six-month appointment, Rachel had blood work, an abdominal MRI, and a barium study.  Despite her fears and to her utter surprise, all of the blood levels came back “unremarkable.”  Her doctor was astonished enough to call the hospital and check the test results.  The MRI came back completely clean.  Even the barium study, ordered to confirm the diagnosis of Crohn’s, came back negative.  (Wow!  Amazing results!!)

Rachel will happily fill you in on the additional perks she has experienced with medical cannabis.  For example, her OCD is greatly diminished, and her moods are more stable.  She feels great.  She has had no headaches, unlike pre-cannabis times.  Additionally, she has lost 30 pounds and hopes to lose more — all benefits she did not expect from her daily use of medical marijuana.

But she surely appreciates them!

*****

May these true stories give you hope.

 

Your Budtender

D Smith
dsmith@canuvo.org
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