%

of Cannabis users are reducing prescription medication use

%

report using Cannabis to ease anxiety

%

use Cannabis to manage chronic pain

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Dr. Miyabe Shields, PhD

Dr. Miyabe Shields, PhD

Director of Education (C3RN)

Medical Patient

Cannabis has saved my life more than once. It was my first medicine and eventually I found that it’s the only psychiatric medicine I can tolerate.

I have a severe anxiety disorder. I’ve seen many, many, many specialists, each with their own different diagnosis for my brain. I’ve been diagnosed with almost every mental health disorder. As of a 2018 neuropsychiatric assessment, there is still no conclusive diagnosis for my specific type of brain atypicality. The symptoms I still struggle with daily are general anxiety, social anxiety, mania and depression, difficulty with attention/concentration, impulse control, insomnia, sensory hypersensitivity, and chronic pain.

I’ve tried quite a few pharmaceutical drugs to manage my symptoms, but the side effects I experienced were horrible. I could not tolerate them. Cannabis is the only thing that allows me to function, as myself, without any significant negative side effects. I knew when I received my first medical card in CA in 2010 that the purpose of my life was to scientifically explain this.

I am a trained research scientist; my PhD is in Pharmaceutical Sciences. I chose to study the Endocannabinoid System, because I needed to understand how and why Cannabis works so well for me. I have a spontaneous/plastic/hyperactive brain – it’s both the best and worst thing about me – and Cannabis decreases the “background noise” in my brain that causes most of the symptoms above. I hope to continue to use my knowledge to empower other Cannabis users and de-stigmatize Cannabis as a medicine, because, really, for me it’s nothing short of a miracle drug.

Andy Westerkamp

Andy Westerkamp

Director of Sales

Medical Patient

Quality of life is a phrase often used in the cannabis industry and something a lot of folks take for granted. I urge the community to think about this when they question the efficacy of cannabis as a medicine. I believe that quality of life is important for everyone, especially for those who have limited or even no other treatment options for their medical condition(s).

A few years ago, I was diagnosed with a rare neurological disease called Hereditary Neuropathy with Liability to Pressure Palsy (HNPP). HNPP is a nerve disorder that affects the peripheral nerves, and pressure on the nerves can cause tingling sensations, numbness, pain, weakness, muscle atrophy, and even paralyzation of affected area. Without cannabis, I experience chronic pain and fatigue on a daily basis.

When I received my diagnosis, I learned the disease was so rare that there is no treatment available.Cannabis has so many medicinal qualities; it not only helps me with chronic pain and numbness but also supports my mental health. Like so many others, I am passionate about a plant that allows me to have a better quality of life.

Life without cannabis would be very different. I am dedicated to breaking down the stigma associated with cannabis. To all patients out there with HNPP/CMT or any untreatable chronic pain disorder who are feeling discouraged or alone, it is our mission is to support patients just like you in healing. It is your right to choose how you can improve your quality of life.