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Pfenninger: Nothing Medical About Medical Marijuana


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http://www.ourmidland.com/story_prep/article_fac6783a-c06b-54c6-a31c-e5f98aa28c40.html

 

Marijuana is a crude drug obtained from the plant Cannabis sativa. The plant contains more than 60 active compounds. Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol or THC is the main active ingredient. Michigan has passed a law making possession of the plant and its derivatives legal if used for medicinal purposes. In our outpatient psychiatric practice we are seeing growing numbers of people with Michigan medical marijuana cards and many more still in the Midland mental health inpatient unit. This rise in marijuana use has led us psychiatrists and mental health practitioners to voice some of our concerns.

There is nothing "medical" about Michigan's new medical marijuana statute. Let's review some facts.

First, it is customary for any new visit to a physician to start with a thorough history and physical exam followed by appropriate labs and x-rays. No such initial assessment occurs when an application is made for the medical marijuana card. The request for the card is sufficient in itself to obtain one. No questions, no prior treatment history and no laboratory results are necessary. We learned this in our interactions with our patients. Ask anyone who has obtained a card. There is nothing medical about Michigan's new medical marijuana.

Second, when an intervention or treatment is ordered, a thorough explanation of the risks and benefits of traditional prescription medicine must be given, but not for marijuana obtained through the new law. The wording of the law states you cannot operate a car or machinery if using THC but even this essential issue is rarely if ever explained.

Third, a follow up visit to assess the results of the intervention is also part of and standard medical treatment, but this does not occur after starting "medical marijuana." All a person has to do is pay several hundred dollars, profess an ache or pain, and that person will be issued a plastic card with a name on it. There is no picture identification required to obtain a card (apparently one is "never available"). Thus, people can use another person's card. Current cards/registrations are being issued primarily for 23 to 25 year olds and the primary diagnoses have been "pain" in 57 percent or "spasms" in 24 percent. Again we want to emphasize that there is nothing "medical" about Michigan's new medical marijuana law.

An even greater concern is the public's seemingly nonchalant attitude that "marijuana is safe." There is the feeling that "this simple weed can do little harm." However, the medical literature is replete with hundreds of studies about the physical and emotional harm that can come from this plant. Recent studies reveal that psychosis, the most severe form of mental illness, is much higher in people who begin using marijuana at or before 15 years of age. Amotivational syndrome (characterized by a person who has no initiative, no drive and no energy) is well documented in people who use this drug regularly. Increased problems with depression and anxiety have also been documented. Let us not forget that marijuana is also very addictive. The same dose that "works" today won't work forever and increased amounts are needed to obtain the same effect. This is what defines chemical dependence.

The physical consequences of chronic marijuana use are also potentially grave. Significant weight gain, which likely comes from overeating and reduced physical activity, is common and presents a major health hazard. The tar and carcinogens in smoked marijuana are just as dangerous as cigarettes or even worse since many cigarettes have filters. The smoke is an irritant to the lining of the nose and lungs, which can cause chronic cough, sinus irritation and lung diseases such as emphysema and lung dysplasia. Decreased testosterone in males and altered menstrual cycles in females are other adverse effects. The brain is also affected negatively with a decrease in both the memory capacity and the ability to think, along with an increase in seizure risk. Slowed reaction times are also clear consequences of marijuana use and can have significant detrimental effects on driving skills. A study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that even a moderate dose of marijuana can affect driving by slowing reaction times and decreasing defensive practices such as checking of mirrors and side streets.

Marijuana plants are much more potent today than they were 40 years ago, which increases the risks and the side effects from its use. The average amount of THC in a plant was 1 percent in the mid 1970s, and rose to 6 to 13 percent in samples from the last two decades. Buyers are not able to know exactly what concentration or amount of active drug they are purchasing since there is no regulation or quality control over the growing and selling of this "medicinal" product. Once again, there is nothing medical about Michigan's new medical marijuana. Who would ever take any drug without knowing the dose they are consuming?

Although some people may benefit from this product such those with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), multiple sclerosis (MS), glaucoma, chronic cancer pain and other severe wasting syndromes, please be aware that the parameters of this law are very much outside the recommendations of most of Michigan physicians. It has not been endorsed by any of the major medical societies including the American Medical Association (AMA), the American Osteopathic Association (AOA), the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) or the Michigan State Medical Society (MSMS). Please consult your regular doctor before embarking on virtually unsupervised use of a potent drug that can have severe adverse effects on your life and well being.

Dr. John L. Pfenninger's column appears on Sundays. His office, Medical Procedures Center, is located in Midland

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Looking between the lines:Is he complaining of allegedly having more patients , or is it really losing patients that bothers him. Maybe people don't want his drugs and nonsense anymore. Let's stop all this free thinking ,personal decision making , after all you don't know if you really feel better, you lazy high-ons.LOL

 

What a marooon!!!

Edited by Romen
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I read this article - it is writing by a psychitrist, who owns a practise that 'services' mental illness. If you read the article is comes off as advertisement.

 

You have to ask, if more and more of her patients are showing up with MM cards - that might mean that her current treatment is NOT WORKING!

 

I like how she listed all the 'ills' of marijuana, but pills they use in their practice are safer?

 

Why worry over FUD articles, stick with city memoriams and your local community - thats something you can fix!

 

-DN

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idiot doctor missed her point entirely

 

"Recent studies reveal that psychosis, the most severe form of mental illness, is much higher in people who begin using (any drug - my words) at or before 15 years of age. Amotivational syndrome (characterized by a person who has no initiative, no drive and no energy) is well documented in people who use this drug regularly. Increased problems with depression and anxiety have also been documented. Let us not forget that (any drug - my words) is also very addictive. The same dose that "works" today won't work forever and increased amounts are needed to obtain the same effect. This is what defines chemical dependence.

 

Its chemical dependence STUPID! Not marijuana, its any drug - the person is stuggling with chemical dependency.

 

JEEEZ!

 

-DN

Edited by The Digital Nomad
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My the DO GOOD ER'S are everywhere today don't know where you get you info but you are way out there, And if you call that a safe place you got there in midland you are out there on that

Little ledge you your self think your safe on !! Lady pot took me off oxy, and that was the last pain med that i was on ! Twenty years of taking pain meds and now nothing ! If your so smart

tell every one what pain med's do to your liver, also tell every one that the Dr's know it kills your liver and every thing else in your body oh ya you have to take more of anything you take all

the time or it don't work, why do you think they make so many different pain pills !! FU Not even sure why i am wasting my time with this ?

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My the DO GOOD ER'S are everywhere today don't know where you get you info but you are way out there, And if you call that a safe place you got there in midland you are out there on that

Little ledge you your self think your safe on !! Lady pot took me off oxy, and that was the last pain med that i was on ! Twenty years of taking pain meds and now nothing ! If your so smart

tell every one what pain med's do to your liver, also tell every one that the Dr's know it kills your liver and every thing else in your body oh ya you have to take more of anything you take all

the time or it don't work, why do you think they make so many different pain pills !! FU Not even sure why i am wasting my time with this ?

I waited a day to post. Probably wouldn't have except for the midland county judge declaring the mmma unconstitutional. Schutte's home town paper.

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Just because somebody might be a pot smoker and then something terrible happens to them, that doesn’t mean smoking pot led to something terrible. A study of 186 UK mental hospitals found no increase in schizophrenia or psychosis admissions, despite use rates of cannabis increasing greatly. Listing marijuana use as a warning sign that someone might be mentally ill is like listing alcohol use as a warning sign that a man might be a spousal abuser. The majority of domestic abusers also abuse alcohol, but that doesn’t mean we suspect every guy enjoying a beer as being a potential wife-beater.

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Did Anslinger and Hearst come back from the dead and pen this? Believe it folks the ultra conservative the sky is falling because of marijuana crowd is coming out of the wood work.

 

 

The truth is forced upon us, very quickly, by a foe.

- Aristophanes

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This guy is a total sham. Here's his practice http://drpfenninger.com/ look at the procedures http://www.mpcenter.net/005.htm it's a *UCKing sooped up cosmetic surgery center. here's a vitals.com list of him http://www.vitals.com/doctors/Dr_John_Pfenninger.html. where does psychology fit in his practice? or how does his knowledge of Family Medicine or his his real expertise: "Colposcopy, female lower genital tract, Female Lower Genital Tract Diseases" lead him to thease "conclusions"? On his site it says they're "state-of-the-art", i bet it takes alot of money to stay that way... And on a side note i couldn't stand how the webpage has a section dedicated to DR. douchebag and how he is some nationaly know author.

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Quote from this **&%#!!! "Current cards/registrations are being issued primarily for 23 to 25 year olds and the primary diagnoses have been "pain" in 57 percent or "spasms" in 24 percent. Again we want to emphasize that there is nothing "medical" about Michigan's new medical marijuana law."

 

I did a Google search and came up with this study....My link

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“A Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Crossover Trial of the

Antinociceptive Effects of Smoked Marijuana on Subjects with

Neuropathic Pain“

Barth Wilsey, M.D., University of California, Davis

This study’s objective was to examine the efficacy of two doses of smoked cannabis on pain in persons

with neuropathic pain of different origins (e.g., physical trauma to nerve bundles, spinal cord injury,

multiple sclerosis, diabetes). In a double-blind, randomized clinical trial participants received either lowdose,

high-dose, or placebo cannabis cigarettes. As customary in CMCR trials, participants were allowed

to continue their usual regimen of pain medications (e.g., codeine, morphine, and others).

The full results of this study have been published in the Journal of Pain (Wilsey, et al., 2008 – see reference

list). Thirty-eight patients underwent a standardized procedure for smoking either high-dose (7%),

low-dose (3.5%), or placebo cannabis; of these, 32 completed all three smoking sessions. The study

demonstrated an analgesic response to smoking cannabis with no significant difference between the

low and the high dose cigarettes. The study concluded that both low and high cannabis doses were efficacious

in reducing neuropathic pain of diverse causes.

Disagreeable or unpleasant side effects were significantly more likely with high dose cigarettes

compared to low dose or placebo, whereas there was no difference in these effects between low dose

and placebo sessions. There was no indication of mood changes (e.g., sadness, anxiety, fearfulness).

“Analgesic Efficacy of Smoked Cannabis”

Mark Wallace, M.D., University of California, San Diego

This study used an experimental model of neuropathic pain to determine whether pain induced by the

injection into the skin of capsaicin, a compound which is the “hot” ingredient in chili peppers, could be

alleviated by smoked cannabis. Another aim of the study was to examine the effects of “dose” of cannabis,

and the time course of pain relief. In a randomized double-blinded placebo controlled trial, volunteers

smoked low, medium, and high dose cannabis (2%, 4%, 8% THC by weight) or placebo cigarettes.

The full results of this study were published in the journal Anesthesiology (Wallace, et al., 2007 – see reference

list). Nineteen healthy volunteers were enrolled, and 15 completed all four smoking sessions. In brief,

five minutes after cannabis exposure, there was no effect on capsaicin-induced pain at any dose. By 45

minutes after cannabis exposure there was a significant decrease in capsaicin-induced pain with the medium

dose (4%) and a significant increase in pain with the high dose (8%). There was no significant effect

seen with low dose (2%). There was a significant inverse relationship between pain perception and plasma

THC. In summary, this study suggested that there may be a “therapeutic window” (or optimal dose) for

smoked cannabis: low doses were not effective; medium doses decreased pain; and higher doses actually

increased pain. These results suggest the mechanism(s) of cannabinoid analgesia are complex, in some

ways like non-opioid pain relievers (e.g., aspirin, ibuprofen) and in others like opioids (e.g., morphine).

 

 

Now they can no longer claim that there are no clinical studies supporting medical marijuana. Will this be enough to get cannabis removed from schedule 1?

Will this stop the Drug Czar from repeating his lie about smoked marijuana not being medicine?

Since all the marijuana was furnished by NIDA and was government grown marijuana,what would these same test results have been using the more exotic strains?

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Pheningers are Pill pushers. they make Huge amounts annually from Big Pharma companies pushing poisens authorized by paying off the FDA to pass these poisens off as Viable Therapy aids.

 

 

 

This guy may be a Phychiatrist, but i can Gaurentee you his family is just as twisted as anyone elses, but its ok, they are all on lithium, cuz its man made poisens.

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Pheningers are Pill pushers. they make Huge amounts annually from Big Pharma companies pushing poisens authorized by paying off the FDA to pass these poisens off as Viable Therapy aids.

 

 

 

This guy may be a Phychiatrist, but i can Gaurentee you his family is just as twisted as anyone elses, but its ok, they are all on lithium, cuz its man made poisens.

 

HIGHEST CONCENTRATIONS OF NATURAL FREE LITHIUM(NATURAL OCCURRING MINERAL) ARE IN BEACH MIST /FOG FROM HEAVY SURF ACTION-LIVE AT THE BEACH... SUFFER LESS

not everyone can live near the beach...that is the problem

-the wealthy have bought most of the nice beach property up! and we have no access to 'free lithium' which is naturally occurring... save a trip to the coast once a year(not going to replenish the lithium reserves doing that)which most cannot afford anyways-so millions suffer depression and bi-polar disorders cause they cannot swim-exist near the coast

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http://www.ourmidland.com/story_prep/article_fac6783a-c06b-54c6-a31c-e5f98aa28c40.html

 

Marijuana is a crude drug obtained from the plant Cannabis sativa. The plant contains more than 60 active compounds. Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol or THC is the main active ingredient. Michigan has passed a law making possession of the plant and its derivatives legal if used for medicinal purposes. In our outpatient psychiatric practice we are seeing growing numbers of people with Michigan medical marijuana cards and many more still in the Midland mental health inpatient unit. This rise in marijuana use has led us psychiatrists and mental health practitioners to voice some of our concerns.

There is nothing "medical" about Michigan's new medical marijuana statute. Let's review some facts.

First, it is customary for any new visit to a physician to start with a thorough history and physical exam followed by appropriate labs and x-rays. No such initial assessment occurs when an application is made for the medical marijuana card. The request for the card is sufficient in itself to obtain one. No questions, no prior treatment history and no laboratory results are necessary. We learned this in our interactions with our patients. Ask anyone who has obtained a card. There is nothing medical about Michigan's new medical marijuana.

Second, when an intervention or treatment is ordered, a thorough explanation of the risks and benefits of traditional prescription medicine must be given, but not for marijuana obtained through the new law. The wording of the law states you cannot operate a car or machinery if using THC but even this essential issue is rarely if ever explained.

Third, a follow up visit to assess the results of the intervention is also part of and standard medical treatment, but this does not occur after starting "medical marijuana." All a person has to do is pay several hundred dollars, profess an ache or pain, and that person will be issued a plastic card with a name on it. There is no picture identification required to obtain a card (apparently one is "never available"). Thus, people can use another person's card. Current cards/registrations are being issued primarily for 23 to 25 year olds and the primary diagnoses have been "pain" in 57 percent or "spasms" in 24 percent. Again we want to emphasize that there is nothing "medical" about Michigan's new medical marijuana law.

An even greater concern is the public's seemingly nonchalant attitude that "marijuana is safe." There is the feeling that "this simple weed can do little harm." However, the medical literature is replete with hundreds of studies about the physical and emotional harm that can come from this plant. Recent studies reveal that psychosis, the most severe form of mental illness, is much higher in people who begin using marijuana at or before 15 years of age. Amotivational syndrome (characterized by a person who has no initiative, no drive and no energy) is well documented in people who use this drug regularly. Increased problems with depression and anxiety have also been documented. Let us not forget that marijuana is also very addictive. The same dose that "works" today won't work forever and increased amounts are needed to obtain the same effect. This is what defines chemical dependence.

The physical consequences of chronic marijuana use are also potentially grave. Significant weight gain, which likely comes from overeating and reduced physical activity, is common and presents a major health hazard. The tar and carcinogens in smoked marijuana are just as dangerous as cigarettes or even worse since many cigarettes have filters. The smoke is an irritant to the lining of the nose and lungs, which can cause chronic cough, sinus irritation and lung diseases such as emphysema and lung dysplasia. Decreased testosterone in males and altered menstrual cycles in females are other adverse effects. The brain is also affected negatively with a decrease in both the memory capacity and the ability to think, along with an increase in seizure risk. Slowed reaction times are also clear consequences of marijuana use and can have significant detrimental effects on driving skills. A study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that even a moderate dose of marijuana can affect driving by slowing reaction times and decreasing defensive practices such as checking of mirrors and side streets.

Marijuana plants are much more potent today than they were 40 years ago, which increases the risks and the side effects from its use. The average amount of THC in a plant was 1 percent in the mid 1970s, and rose to 6 to 13 percent in samples from the last two decades. Buyers are not able to know exactly what concentration or amount of active drug they are purchasing since there is no regulation or quality control over the growing and selling of this "medicinal" product. Once again, there is nothing medical about Michigan's new medical marijuana. Who would ever take any drug without knowing the dose they are consuming?

Although some people may benefit from this product such those with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), multiple sclerosis (MS), glaucoma, chronic cancer pain and other severe wasting syndromes, please be aware that the parameters of this law are very much outside the recommendations of most of Michigan physicians. It has not been endorsed by any of the major medical societies including the American Medical Association (AMA), the American Osteopathic Association (AOA), the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) or the Michigan State Medical Society (MSMS). Please consult your regular doctor before embarking on virtually unsupervised use of a potent drug that can have severe adverse effects on your life and well being.

Dr. John L. Pfenninger's column appears on Sundays. His office, Medical Procedures Center, is located in Midland

 

 

Only one public comment sort of sided with this so called "Dr" all others questioned his credibility as a Dr, his medical knowledge, and research skills.

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Society causes mental illness. What do they expect when they are so abusive? If there weren't so many things to worry about, be afraid of, etc., there'd be less paranoia. Mj does not cause it. If it did, wouldn't it do it all the time, to all people, or most of the time, to most people? When someone is treated well, they have no reason to be afraid, violent, etc. Those who abuse are the real sick ones who should be put away for life. Society is critically ill. Those who oppress us have had centuries to perfect their techniques. People would be as paranoid without mj in any such situation. When people are oppressed, which is an intense form of abuse, though it may seem very subtle, there's any number of problems it can cause. People get angry, anti-social, depressed, anxious, feel hopeless, scared, bitter, lazy; they may be unable to express their feelings, either that they can't find the words to express them, are unable to channel them, and or they're just not allowed to express them in any way. Somehow, these emotions will surface, when the stress gets to be too much. Then, watch out. Well, what the heck do they expect?

 

That scare-mongering, misinformed idiot doctor is a sad example of what happens in a society that is critically ill.

 

Sb

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Sb, your clarity on this is compelling and inspiring. Thanks.

Society causes mental illness. What do they expect when they are so abusive? If there weren't so many things to worry about, be afraid of, etc., there'd be less paranoia. Mj does not cause it. If it did, wouldn't it do it all the time, to all people, or most of the time, to most people? When someone is treated well, they have no reason to be afraid, violent, etc. Those who abuse are the real sick ones who should be put away for life. Society is critically ill. Those who oppress us have had centuries to perfect their techniques. People would be as paranoid without mj in any such situation. When people are oppressed, which is an intense form of abuse, though it may seem very subtle, there's any number of problems it can cause. People get angry, anti-social, depressed, anxious, feel hopeless, scared, bitter, lazy; they may be unable to express their feelings, either that they can't find the words to express them, are unable to channel them, and or they're just not allowed to express them in any way. Somehow, these emotions will surface, when the stress gets to be too much. Then, watch out. Well, what the heck do they expect?

 

That scare-mongering, misinformed idiot doctor is a sad example of what happens in a society that is critically ill.

 

Sb

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Current cards/registrations are being issued primarily for 23 to 25 year olds and the primary diagnoses have been "pain" in 57 percent or "spasms" in 24 percent.

 

Sounds about right. Young people perceive much less stigma with marijuana use and are hence more likely to seek it as a treatment option. And the last time I checked, pain syndromes and chronic muscle spasms are a lot more common than AIDS (though this cynical... "doctor"... may wish it be otherwise).

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