Medical THC and Autism
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mobileweb/2013/01/31/alex-echols-marijuana-autistic-rages_n_2552004.html

    Heartbroken and desperate, an Oregon family has turned to medical marijuana to help manage their son's self-destructive rages. They say the treatment, which has sparked controversy, has helped their child, described as "severely autistic," like nothing else has.

    According to KPTV, 11-year-old Alex Echols suffers from tuberous sclerosis -- a rare genetic disorder that causes the growth of non-malignant tumors in organs. Doctors say Alex has growths in his brain that have led to autism, debilitating seizures and self-directed rages.

    Writing in a blog he set up for his son, dad Jeremy Echols explains that Alex often exhibits extreme, self-destructive behavior, such as slamming his head into walls and slapping his face until it bleeds.

    Echols says that after trying --and failing -- for years to protect Alex from himself, he and his wife were forced to move their son into a state-funded group home when he was 8.

    "Alex had every family of behavior medication known to the psychiatrist, and we tried private behavior therapy," Alex's mom Karen wrote on the family's Facebook page, the New York Daily News notes.

    "We tried some swimming for a while, we had a special sensory room set up in the garage, and we did some stuff at home and at school with communication techniques to try and help him tell us what he needed before he got into a rage fit... We tried a lot of stuff before we considered the group home."

    Then, in 2009, Alex's mom stumbled upon some articles about medical marijuana treatments for children with autism and rage. Interest piqued, the family decided to try the controversial treatment.

    By the following year, a doctor had approved Alex for use of the drug. The boy's transformation following treatment, his family says, was astounding.

    "Eventually we had some truly amazing results," Alex's dad wrote on his blog. "He explored his world with his hands, something he was very rarely able to do. His hands were the enemy up to this point ... But on those few truly magical days when we got the dosing just right, he played. He used his hands to explore. He looked at us and smiled."

    But now, Echols says, they have encountered yet another hurdle. Alex's group home will not administer the marijuana to the boy, so his parents must bring him out of the facility about three times a week to give it to him.

    In a recent post on their Facebook page,Alex's parents say they are now pushing for "fixing the federal laws so that one day the group home will be able and willing to dose Alex with the one medicine that we have seen work."

    But according to a 2011 report about Alex and his family published in the medical marijuana journal Treating Yourself,this change "will probably not occur any time soon." Federal agencies like the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development are "working hard to scare anyone offering any type of public housing assistance where cannabis is used, even in states with medical marijuana programs," the magazine notes.

    With medical experts issuing warnings that the effects of the drug on child development are unknown, treating children with marijuana continues to be a controversial and highly contentious issue.

    The Echols themselves have not been spared criticism. They insist, however, that the potential risks are far outweighed by the benefits.

    "For us, the long-term side effects that are unknown for something that can't kill him are a lot better than the long-term side effects of him beating himself bloody," Echols told KPTV. He adds, however, that while marijuana has eased his son's symptoms, Alex has not been "cured" of his rage.

    According to a recent Facebook update,Alex underwent surgery this week.

    Alex is not the first child in Oregon who has been treated with medical marijuana. In November last year, The Huffington Post reported that a 7-year-old leukemia patient named Mykayla Comstock was one of the state's "youngest medical marijuana users."

    Mykayla is reportedly one of 52 children with cancer who have been authorized to use cannabis by the state. She is said to take "a gram of cannabis oil daily to combat side effects of her chemotherapy, such as nausea, restlessness and loss of appetite."
    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    Personally I think it is awesome they found something that works. But sad they have such a hassle to go through.
    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • kittykisses80kittykisses80
    Posts: 1,012Member
    I agree, :-) if it helps I'm all for it!
  • KrabbyKay
    Posts: 5,914Member
    Well WTF is the big deal??? It's just like any *other* pharmaceutical, some of which are controlled substances!!! Why pick this one out of the hat?? There are lots of ways to ingest it, it's not like ya gotta let the kid puff a fattie!!
  • PurpleFlowersPurpleFlowers
    Posts: 6,043Member
    Im all for it. I know firsthand (with my son) what a difference marijuana can make in behavior.
    Stay away from my chocolate and nobody gets hurt!

    I think I like who I am becoming...
  • Newb
    Posts: 256Member

    Im all for it. I know firsthand what a difference marijuana can make in behavior.


    Ditto.
  • DemandaDemanda
    Posts: 5,920Member
    KrabbyKay said:

    Well WTF is the big deal??? It's just like any *other* pharmaceutical, some of which are controlled substances!!! Why pick this one out of the hat?? There are lots of ways to ingest it, it's not like ya gotta let the kid puff a fattie!!



    Yes, this.  
    "The truth will set you free. But first, it will piss you off." ~ Gloria SteinemPhotobucket
  • beambeam
    Posts: 1,579Member
    Reminds of a friend who worked as an international buyer for a big pharma company, she dealt with buying and securing all the right papers to ship heavily controlled substances... we gave her a lot of shit for being a international drug dealer.
    A broken heart is a rite of passage and, looking back, I must have wanted one pretty badly. "Kick me," I demanded, and when somebody finally did, I burst like a cheap piñata. - DAVID SEDARIS
  • BettyboBettybo
    Posts: 588Member
    In all honesty this doesnt suprise me - its been proven many times to have incredible health benefits when used correctly. Such a huge stigma really makes it difficult to explore though.
    Harry Ray - 10th June 2013 <3<br />
    We all got old at breakneck speed, slow it down - go easy on me...
  • VegantasticVegantastic
    Posts: 4,225Member
    Awesome. I think it's great. I'd much rather a natural substance than a chemical cocktail that was cooked up in a lab. And like @KrabbyKay said, you're not going to roll them a J lol
    "Be the change you wish to see in the world"
    "Don't Panic"
  • BettyboBettybo
    Posts: 588Member
    If u are rolling one tho, lemme know...

    just saying.
    Harry Ray - 10th June 2013 <3<br />
    We all got old at breakneck speed, slow it down - go easy on me...
  • VegantasticVegantastic
    Posts: 4,225Member

    If u are rolling one tho, lemme know...

    just saying.



    =))
    "Be the change you wish to see in the world"
    "Don't Panic"
  • GritsGrits
    Posts: 4,370Member

    If u are rolling one tho, lemme know...

    just saying.



    Dude. Me, too...and I think I will. :D

    But I really don't see what's wrong with it. The smoke is the part of using that's bad for you. Vaporizing is really not bad at all. I'm so glad they found a way to relieve his stress and symptoms.
    "I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and I believe in miracles." ~Audrey Hepburn
  • RosamundiRosamundi
    Posts: 1,412Member
    LOL @Horace'sMum!!!
  • meandmy243meandmy243
    Posts: 9,474Member
    Its legal here.. i still havent got any... i cabt role a doob and sold my pipe years ago!
    let them eat cake! because id rather have pie!!!
  • ProudPalsyMamma
    Posts: 1,273Member
    My son has cp when he's older if he wants to get as high as a kite I will let him you know why? Because weed helps pain! Weed is natural and weed is just all around better for you then all these medicines
  • theprincessmommytheprincessmommy
    Posts: 701Member
    I wish people would get over the weed thing and just legalize and regulate it. Don't the local governments realize how much money they would get if they could tax it.
  • MegsueMegsue
    Posts: 1,846Member
    I'm also on the "so fucking what" wagon. It's medicine that helps people. If we were doping this kid up with morphine because of pain, nobody would bat an eye. Double standards and old-fashioned thinking fucking piss me off. There is no reason why these parents should have to defend their decision seek out a treatment that helps their child no matter what it is.
  • katz_meowkatz_meow
    Posts: 6,380Member
    Megsue said:

    I'm also on the "so fucking what" wagon. It's medicine that helps people. If we were doping this kid up with morphine because of pain, nobody would bat an eye. Double standards and old-fashioned thinking fucking piss me off. There is no reason why these parents should have to defend their decision seek out a treatment that helps their child no matter what it is.


    Yup. And are you actually reading my mind @Megsue? Second post I read from you this morning that I swear I wrote it! Lol
    There is nothing to be gained from treating others poorly.

    Don't be a dick.
  • PurpleFlowersPurpleFlowers
    Posts: 6,043Member
    You know whats funny? Im all for legalizing pot but Ive actually never used it myself. Hahaha!
    Stay away from my chocolate and nobody gets hurt!

    I think I like who I am becoming...
  • katz_meowkatz_meow
    Posts: 6,380Member
    There's a few of us on here that can help you out with that @PurpleFlowers.....insert evil laughter
    There is nothing to be gained from treating others poorly.

    Don't be a dick.
  • PurpleFlowersPurpleFlowers
    Posts: 6,043Member
    katz_meow said:

    There's a few of us on here that can help you out with that @PurpleFlowers.....insert evil laughter


    Hahaha! Oh, trust me, its all around me. I just have no interest in it.
    Stay away from my chocolate and nobody gets hurt!

    I think I like who I am becoming...
  • Zooy
    Posts: 167Member
    If it works for them go ahead.

    If they want to share I'm all for that too.
  • SasafrasSasafras
    Posts: 1,627Member
    I'm proud of the parents they went above and out of the box to help ease there sons pain. Any parent would if faced with the same challenges. I know if dd had such problems I'd move to a state that it was legal and get her some relief!
  • kristy2127
    Posts: 95Member
    I agree with you all. If it works do it! I'm sure that poor kid (and his parents) was living in his own personal hell. However, as many of you have mentioned, I don't see marijuana becoming a legally recognized treatment anytime soon. The pharmaceutical companies will do everything they can to not let that happen.
  • Its amazing (and ludicrous) the stigma weed has, especially compared to the crap the pharmaceutical companies push on us, many times kids who have often been misdiagnosed and therefore, mismedicated with powerful drugs that have sometimes lasting side affects.

    The amount of hypocricy is astounding among anti-pot legislators, many of whom probably go home to their daily drinks and prescription pills.

  • GingersnapGingersnap
    Posts: 9,696Member
    Megsue said:

    I'm also on the "so fucking what" wagon. It's medicine that helps people. If we were doping this kid up with morphine because of pain, nobody would bat an eye. Double standards and old-fashioned thinking fucking piss me off. There is no reason why these parents should have to defend their decision seek out a treatment that helps their child no matter what it is.



    This.

    image
    “The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.” ― Joseph Campbell
  • eappleeapple
    Posts: 1,997Member
    I really think you gotta do what works, and this does. I wonder why they aren't bringing him home if they have had such success with the treatment and have such difficulties having their needs met at the group home.

    @humansneedtoevolve (love the name btw) your last comment there reminded me of a fb meme from @nessarose, I believe it was her. Something like "oh you don't smoke weed? Well I do. But I bet you're either on some sort of pills or an alcholic" it made me laugh because the same people who are so harsh to criticize Mary Jane are the ones taking oxi for pain relief and Xanax for their anxiety and washing that down with a crown royal and an ambien to sleep. How about you take 4 puffs of a j and you can fall asleep easily pain and anxiety free.
    And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music. ~Nietzsche
  • HorridWenchHorridWench
    Posts: 702Member
    =D> =D> =D>
    "She Dances in a Ring of Fire and Throws Off the Challenge, With a Shrug" - Jim Morrison
  • TheHeadacheslayer
    Posts: 2,472Member
    I watched an incredible video called "Does Grandma smoke Pot?"--it's aimed at giving information of the benefits of marijuana and encouraging people to help CHANGE the laws--not breaking them.

    But one story (and I don't know if it's the same case) was a family whose son is autistic. He wasn't eating, was out of control, depressed......I think a doctor finally said--give him a "magic brownie".

    Eating it gave him the munchies....so he ate and gained weight.
    It mellowed him out, allowing him to get the types of therapy he needed.
    And he was more "in control" so he wasn't depressed.

    Used medically, it literally can be a life-saver. Good for those parents!!! I would do it too if my kids needed it.

  • HorridWenchHorridWench
    Posts: 702Member
    My husband and I bought this book for our sons when he started asking questions about our smoking..awesome book btw
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/1617751863/ref=mw_dp_mpd?pd=1
    "She Dances in a Ring of Fire and Throws Off the Challenge, With a Shrug" - Jim Morrison
  • OxiMOMOxiMOM
    Posts: 3,104Member
    It will never go as far as full us legilization for medical use because the big pharicutacal companies will spend billions stopping it. Its a damn shame. Look up uses for it the lists go on forever!! We debated at a time having my mom try it as it has been shown to slow down and in very early cases reverse the effects of AD.mom eventually decided no because of the legal issues surounding it.
  • HorridWenchHorridWench
    Posts: 702Member
    My mom has MS, and luckily she lives in Washington State, she says that there is nothing that compares to the pain relief she gets eating a little corner of a magic brownie :)
    "She Dances in a Ring of Fire and Throws Off the Challenge, With a Shrug" - Jim Morrison
  • In all honesty this doesnt suprise me - its been proven many times to
    have incredible health benefits when used correctly. Such a huge stigma
    really makes it difficult to explore though.
     
    I agree with this statement. I cannot wait for medical marijuana in my state. I take it for my anxiety and nueropathy.
    "Half our life is spent trying to find something to do with the time we have rushed through life trying to save."
    -Will Smith
  • GingersnapGingersnap
    Posts: 9,696Member
    Marijuana can exacerbate anxiety and depression in some individuals. Medications and foods effect people differently. I think it should still be an available option.
    image
    “The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.” ― Joseph Campbell
  • booseneca
    Posts: 232Member
    I think its great that they are open-minded enough to try this with their son! I cringe when people who have never tried it criticize it. Yet these same people drink a beer or glass of wine to self medicate at the end of the day. To me its silly to judge someone for their choices in how to treat whatever ailment they have......if it works for you....who am I to judge? I say BRAVO to his parents for trying to help their son anyway they can!!