Ask the Med Marijuana Patient

Well, yesterday I went through the enormous hassle of renewing my medical marijuana card.

If anyone is interested in the procedure, post your questions and I’ll answer them from a California legally authorized point of view.

What condition/disease do you have that makes marijuana medically advisable?

(Mornin’ Chicas!)

How much does it cost?

How long have you been on the treatment?

Did you toke it before you “needed” it?

How much do you smoke in a day?

Do you share it with your non-needy friends?

How much can you possess at any given time?

Can you smoke it outside your home?

Have you ever been “busted” for it?

I have chronic lower back pain/sciatica along with some jolly muscle spasms. The result of the medication is that the muscles around the nerve relax the pinching.

Hola, sweetie! The doctor’s fee was $125 since I was a renewal (150 for newbies) and while it’s not required, an ID card, accepted throughout California was $25. Both of these are good for a year.

I’ve been using this legally for two years. I’ve been partaking since I was a teenager. I much prefer being legal and having a very convenient and well-stocked dispensary from which to make my choices.

I probably use about two “joints” worth per day. I’m just now learning about vaporization, and it’s da bomb. No tar, no resin, just vapors. Much more healthful according to lots of educated folks!

Sharing is “illegal”. The doctor likened this to any other prescription med. No one else is allowed to partake of my medicine. I don’t always follow this rule. That statement there might lock this thread. I hope not. I won’t expound.

I can have eight ounces of dried and up to 12 live plants if I so choose. I don’t grow because that would be conspicuous. I could, however, plant myself in my driveway and burn a doob if I so chose. It’s recommended though, to not call attention to yourself and have neighbors be offended and call the cops. But, if called, they’d only tell me to go inside, unless they were Federal officers. Never been busted, TG.

I’m all legal - ONLY if I were under surveillance by Feds could I get in trouble. Virtually impossible, since I’m just a single person who doesn’t distribute.

Thanks for being on the Show!

What does the doc say about driving after using? Does it come with the same yellow labels other mood altering drugs come with i.e. Do not operate machinery until familiar with the effects of this drug and others?

Are you considered driving under the influence if you are caught / pulled over?

Do you work? If so do your coworkers know?

As an avid recreational user well into my 20’s I seemed to remember there were two groups of users… Those who paniced and became complete bumbling fools and those who were completely fine funtioning whilst baked. How does a doc differentiate between the two before prescribing it?

No, you’re not all legal. As you point out here.

Prior to handing out the signed recommendations the doctor holds a group educational class. He addresses specific issues such as driving. This man must be rich beyond my comprehension. There are three sessions a day that consist of 40-60 people.

It is illegal to smoke before (I’m kinda deaf so I missed how long before) or while driving. Kinda like an open container, it needs to be far in the back if you must carry, like after visiting the dispensary.

I think that if pulled over and the cop found reason to believe (odor, red eyes, etc.) I was smoking pot, I have no defense. It’s most definitely driving under the influence, but I doubt they’d tack on any illicit substance charges. Therefore - don’t smoke and drive!

I’m not employed currently by choice. Got laid off in December and decided to stay with the kids. HIDE from the kids. Completely private. I never shared my situation with anyone at work. Doctor says it’s supposed to be private, but - that a person should reveal their medicine usage prior to any pre-employment drug screens. Doctor says that since my use of it is legal, in a hypothetical situation it shouldn’t hinder my prospects for jobs. That’s probably a lawsuit waiting to happen.

There’s a NP who interviews all potential patients. You really would be surprised to see the utter diversity. See that elderly Asian gentleman there? He was there yesterday, along with his elderly wife and (YIKES!) what I assume was their small grandchild. THAT was wrong. See that 40ish soccer mom? That’s me. Along with people who might appear to be there to abuse the system. Reselling is HIGHLY illegal.

QtM, do you have an opposition to this ability in CA? I’m interested to know how regular docs feel about the docs that write the recs.

My chances of having Federal attention are so infinitesimal that I don’t even consider it a possibility. I don’t worry about it anymore, at all. I’m protected by law.

I’ve got patients in prison right now who are there for prescription drug offenses: They shared (or sold) their schedule II narcotics, like oxycodone, methadone, morphine, fentanyl, etc. I suspect sharing your prescription marijuana could open you up to similar trouble. Hence I don’t consider you as “all legal” as you consider yourself.

I’m for medical marijuana in cases of malignant pain, wasting disease, and intractable nausea. Not for chronic non-malignant pain or elevated intra-ocular pressure.

Did you have other drug treatments before the marijuana? How does the marijuana compare?

Yes, have you tried other, more “standard” medications, and if so, why have you choosen marijuana?

Contradictory, for one thing - sharing is distributing; admitting illegal activity, for another.

It won’t lock the thread. It will, however, draw you an official warning, as you should know better than to discuss illegal activity. Don’t do it again.

Did you use recreationally before having it prescribed?

I’ve tried every stinkin’ med on the market. The pain is incredible and hovers around an 8 on the pain scale, on bad days. EVERYTHING from anti-inflammatories, narcotics, muscle relaxants - you name it, I’ve tried it. Compared to a Soma, the Soma will make me really sleepy and I couldn’t take it during the day unless I wanted to sleep the day away. My medicine now hardly effects my head, as you can purchase different strains that provide differing relief. I would prefer sins, but indica and sativa are the most prevalent strains. The prescription bottles that are the packaging state clearly the “don’t drive/operate heavy machinery” and “keep away from children”.

Shout out here to Frank - I’m really sorry and I should’a backspaced as I was typing. I won’t mention it again.

The purpose of my posting this thread is this: there are a lot of people who are scared or intimidated by the thought of outing themselves to the government. I think that I’d rather tell the truth, get sanctioned and get on with life. If a person uses this medicine and it actually provides a relief for a real problem, then they should take the initiative to get themselves legal. There’s a lot of people using this, and they have been for what, hundreds of years? Finally the State has allowed that maybe, just maybe, we’re not just stupid dope fiends. I’m not friends with anyone else at this time who partakes, legally or otherwise. That solves the “hey, can you kick down” and me saying no issue. My husband is in a City government job that provides for random testing. He’s never in the fourteen years we’ve been together even wanted to try it. He’s never had a positive test because of second-hand smoke.

I just want people to know that there are options, and if they’ve got the $$ they should take this route. I believe that it’s the best way. And it’s not hard to find a prescribing doctor. There’s just a stigma that won’t go away. GET LEGAL if you can!

I think I love you.

You mentioned vaporization… I’m assuming you get your marijuana loose in a baggie or prescription bottle.

Years ago I saw on some news magazine show, possibly 60 Minutes, an article about medical marijuana. They interviewed an older gentleman who had a coffee can full of pre-rolled joints that looked liked mass-produced cigarettes. (My eyes almost popped out of my head) Are pre-rolled “cigarettes” available to you?

Is this in your medical opinion, or a personal prejudice? If for personal reasons, why would it matter what type of pain a patient may be suffering if marijuana does in fact lessen said pain to a comfortable degree?

That’s my medical opinion.

Whenever I go to San Francisco for some big event, like the Gay Pride parade or some other big street festival type thing, there are always people walking around selling pot brownies. Frequently, they’ll hand you some medical marijuana literature or a refrigerator magnet or something. These people aren’t particularly discreet. They don’t walk around yelling “get your pot brownies here!” but they’re pretty obvious. The cops don’t seem to care all that much.

It’s almost as if, under the guise of “medical marijuana” it’s legal to sell pot brownies to anybody. Obviously this isn’t so, but what’s the deal? Does the medical marijuana issue somehow make marijuana de facto “legal” in San Francisco?

Or are SF cops just really laid back about pot in general?

Sometimes. It’s up to the dispensary as to how they sell their product. I’ve seen some really crappy dispensaries (a literal hole-in-the-wall) and some really nice ones. The one I frequent has lots of choices. I don’t know how they make the choice to roll or bag. I have seen “pre-rolled” before, but they’re not always available. Prices are unbelievably awesome as well. It’s just all-around a better atmosphere. I can’t praise it enough. No more hiding, no more dealing with people who you wouldn’t acknowledge on the street, no more getting ripped off. So many positives for the one negative - my name is in a government file somewhere stating that I admit to smoking marijuana.

I’m pleased with the variety of questions. And I’m also pleased to share my experience with y’all.

What is again?

That it doesn’t stop the pain, or that people shouldn’t enjoy it?