Fw: [mmjlist] US MI: OPED: Doctors Demolish Myths on Medical Marijuana

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—– Original Message —–
From: "Richard Lake" <rlake@mapinc.org>
To: <mmjlist@cannabismd.org>
Sent: Sunday, February 24, 2008 6:08 AM
Subject: [mmjlist] US MI: OPED: Doctors Demolish Myths on Medical Marijuana

> Newshawk: ballot initiative http://stoparrestingpatients.org/
> Pubdate: Sat, 23 Feb 2008
> Source: Lansing State Journal (MI)
> Webpage: http://drugsense.org/url/mi6QgkI1
> Copyright: 2008 Lansing State Journal
> Contact: http://www.lsj.com/contactus/ltr_editor.html
> Website: http://www.lansingstatejournal.com/
> Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/232
> Author: Dianne Byrum
> Note: Dianne Byrum is a partner in Byrum & Fisk Advocacy Communications
> and a former state legislator.
> Bookmark: http://www.mapinc.org/mmj.htm (Marijuana – Medicinal)
>
> DOCTORS DEMOLISH MYTHS ON MEDICAL MARIJUANA
>
> New Analysis Shows Feds Are Wrong on Pot
>
> As Michigan voters prepare to consider a November ballot initiative to
> protect seriously ill patients who use medical marijuana from arrest and
> jail, one of America’s leading medical societies has come down forcefully
> on the side of compassion and common sense, in supporting medical
> marijuana for seriously ill people. These doctors have demolished the
> myths being floated by opponents of medical marijuana.
>
> The American College of Physicians is the nation’s largest medical
> specialty organization and the second largest physician group in the
> United States.
>
> Its membership numbers 124,000 doctors – specialists in internal medicine,
> cardiology, neurology, pulmonary disease, oncology and infectious
> diseases, among others. ACP publishes Annals of Internal Medicine, the
> most widely cited medical specialty journal in the world.
>
> In a just-released position paper, backed up with 10 pages of scientific
> documentation and references, ACP says the federal government is wrong to
> classify marijuana as unsuitable for medical use and urges an immediate
> review of its status, "given the scientific evidence regarding marijuana’s
> safety and efficacy in some clinical situations." ACP specifically calls
> for "protection from criminal or civil penalties for patients who use
> medical marijuana as permitted under state laws," such as the one Michigan
> will soon vote on.
>
> ACP directly takes on the myths already being raised by opponents:
>
> ACP cites studies showing that marijuana’s active components "may provide
> symptom relief not found in any other medication" for patients suffering
> from AIDS or undergoing cancer chemotherapy and experiencing severe pain,
> nausea and appetite loss.
>
> ACP explains that a technology called vaporization removes the hazards of
> smoking while maintaining the benefits that patients prefer.
>
> ACP notes that the THC pill called Marinol, touted as a substitute for
> marijuana, has "serious limitations" due to "slow absorption" and side
> effects that are "more severe."
>
> "Marijuana has not been shown to be the cause of even the most serious
> predictor of serious drug abuse," the doctors write, adding pointedly,
> "Opiates are highly addictive yet medically effective … There is no
> evidence to suggest that medical use of opiates has increased perception
> that their illicit use is safe or acceptable."
>
> The group representing 124,000 physicians has declared that it’s time for
> public policy to recognize "marijuana’s proven efficacy at treating
> certain symptoms and its relatively low toxicity."
>
> Michigan voters should take the doctors’ advice this November and vote to
> protect seriously ill patients from arrest and jail.
>
> ———————————————————————
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