Here I am in the “great Commonwealth of Kentucky”, on January 2, 2009, without a physician to attend to my health needs, after fifteen long years of struggle. Why? Because I smoke Cannabis for pain and anxiety among other conditions.
Since 1998 I have been through at least eight “pain clinics” and ONE M.D., that had stood beside me since 1995. But as of today I have been “fired” as a patient for having a positive drug screen which only showed positive for Marijuana when he referred me to the last pain clinic.
Cut off, after fifteen years, for having used Cannabis for my own health.
My medical history is complicated to say the least. I have been diagnosed with many things, and to this day I am not really sure what is wrong with me. In my experience, the doctors in Louisville like to “cut and release”, and if you ask questions you will get the generalized answers that you already knew to begin with. In short, if your heart is still beating when you walk in the office, you must be o.k.
The following is a short synopsis of my medical history, (though not all conclusive):
1960-1978 Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy due to chronic sickness up to 1970.
1978 – Diagnosed with chronic depression
1983 – Diagnosed with chronic depression/anxiety
1985 – Tubal Ligation
1990- Along with the “depression/anxiety” I began having chronic abdominal pain and bladder pain. I was (and had been all of my life) treated for chronic bladder infections.
I was having so much illness that it prompted me to leave my job of five years with a predominant insurance company because I just could not cope with the pain and sickness anymore.
1991 – I was referred to a “women’s clinic” where I was continually seen for chronic cervical infections and bladder infections. Between 1991-1993 I had many trips to the ER because of those infections. Of note, they always attributed my pain to the depression and anxiety and never gave me any pain medication until a month before surgery in 1993.
1993 – The Gynecologist decided that I had several cysts on my ovaries after a ultrasound, and said that he would do a partial hysterectomy and a bladder tie and that that should take care of the situation. During the surgery, a needle was broken off in my pelvic bone, which they managed to extract after several additional hours in surgery. After the surgery, I continued to have pelvic pain, and bladder infections.
1994 – The Gynecologist decided it was probably adhesions, and that they would do an outpatient surgery to try to resolve the problem. That did not work either.
1995 – I was finally put on Medicare after having been given Disability in 2003 for depression. After living through hell the previous ten years, I decided to go to a internist which was down the street from where I lived. At that point I was put on pain medication. However, there had been no real diagnosis of the pain I was having.
1995 – A friend encouraged me to see her “surgeon”, at which time I received emergency surgery for Gallbladder Disease. The Surgeons stopped counting after 60 large stones and informed my family that my “insides looked like someone took a hot glue gun to them”. The scar tissue had been so bad that they could not find my appendix or “I would have taken that out too”, he had said. Unfortunately for me, shortly after my surgery he left the country to go back to his home country.
1996 – Continuing on pain medication from my internist, and still having many bladder problems and pelvic problems I went to another Gynecologist who offered to do a “total hysterectomy and adhesion removal”. I was sent to outpatient surgery, but ended up in the hospital for a number of days because the surgery was intense.
I continued on through 1997 still having abdominal pain, and still on pain medication. In 1998 he referred me to a “pain clinic”.
1998 – After coming down with an unknown illness with a high fever, my Internist admitted me to the hospital where the next day I had a CVA/Stroke. The pain clinic I had been seeing had me on oxycontin and hydrocodone, along with Neurontin and was located in the same hospital where I was admitted. However, somehow, when I was released 10 days later and received my medication to go home on which included pain medication, there was a mix up in the doctor’s names on the prescriptions and I was investigated for “doctor shopping” and released from their pain clinic. I was cleared of any wrongdoing but the damage had already been done. My internist continued to prescribe my pain medication until 2003. Of note, I had stopped the oxycontin and Neurontin as they where really hard on my depression. The Neurologist that had taken my case in the hospital “fired” me for being “too ill for him to treat”.
2003 – I am forced into a pain clinic again. Incidentally, this clinic turned out to be the largest legal narcotic writer in Kentucky. I was given oxycontin, morphine, large amounts of hydrocodone or oxycodone. The doctor attempted a “plexis block” of my abdomen at which time one or both of my Kidneys were punctured. I bleed for 12 hours, but “I was o.k., and it was nothing to worry about” per the doctor. Then came the methadone. I was frazzled all the time. I was a “legal” drug addict that almost burned down the house more than once. I tried to continue on and eventually quit taking everything except hydrocodone and an occasional soma. But in 2006, I was given a “drug test” which showed that I was smoking Marijuana and guess what…They refused to fill any more narcotics EXCEPT the methadone. At that point I gave it back to them and told them they could keep it. I “fired” them.
I then went back to my internist which agreed to prescribe my hydrocodone. But between 2003 and 2008 I was turned down by many other pain clinics.
Then in December of 2008 the decision was made that my internist could no longer fill my medication’s because of a PDS at the last pain clinic. He then “fired” me.
Of note, during the period of 2001 – 2008 I had lost my first Grandchild to a stillbirth, cared for and lost my father in 2001 and continued to live with my Mother and care for her until she was so ill that I was forced to put her in a Nursing Home in 2007. My Mother died on November 24, 2008. Previous to that I had lost my best friend “Sally” who was my dog that had always been beside me through it all since 1993. My Heart has been irreversibly broken. So with all of this loss on my mind, and then losing my only doctor of fifteen years, I have really been tested. I credit prayer and family and my “Cannabis” for my survival. There were so many times I just wanted to call it quits. But there was always some “need” for me to be here.
Back in 2003 I had started researching online “Medical Marijuana”. I knew I used it, and I knew I needed it, but I had just thought I was a “pot smoker”. I had never credited it with saving my life until after my Dad died in 2001. You see, he had called me about three months prior to his death and asked me if I could get him some. Because of my ignorance of the medical benefit of Marijuana, my Father died without the medication that could have reduced his misery. My Mother was diagnosed with HBP and Alzheimer’s which possibly could have been helped with Marijuana although I was too afraid of the “elder abuse” laws to try it. I feel guilty about that too. I might have had a healthier Mother for a few more years.
I have never had a police record. I only have a glass of wine a couple of times a year. I have even managed to stay out of the Psychiatric Hospital, although there were a few times I would have probably benefited from it.
And now, the doctor that I thought would always be there for me has left me in the cold, without even a personal phone call from him. The letter was signed by office staff.
I do not hold any grudges against this doctor. He did what he had to do to save his livelihood. Although I do not know what the “pertinent details” of the situation where, I am assuming the DEA of KY was somehow involved.
In Kentucky it is called KASPER. “KASPER” in and of itself has become a syndrome in Kentucky. What I cannot understand is why, when KY is so known for it’s oxycontin abuse and death’s, should it be illegal for me to smoke Cannabis, in my own home, especially since I do have such a medical record. (I have never passed a drug screening test due only to Marijuana).
It reminds me of a “genocidal drama”… Give out all the Narcotics that you can, which will downsize the population, and at the same time they can punish the people who are Marijuana users and “force” them into forfeiting their Marijuana, and using the “Pharmaceutical death drugs”.
There is no such thing as a Marijuana friendly doctor in Kentucky. They are all scared to death.
I must say that if I had not been using Marijuana for the last fifteen years or more, I sincerely believe that I would have died by now.
I was told by one doctor that I was “living on borrowed time”.
What kind of Government conspiracy would do such a thing as to make a “plant” illegal?
THE TRUTH IS OUT THERE, JUST FOLLOW THE MONEY!
The state of Kentucky is for all practical purposes bankrupt. Violence and homelessness are continually on the rise. It is NOT Marijuana that has caused this. Statistically, Kentucky, especially certain counties, are not a healthy place to live. And the members of my family who do not use Marijuana have had greater health problems than me in a number of cases.
Our Mayor call’s it “possibly city”.
For most of us it is nearly impossible to live here. Lack of education and health care are abominable. If you are one of the lucky ones who make more money than you need and/or have the benefits of a major manufacturing company or other entity, then you may survive a little longer and a little better.
But most true Kentuckians have been laborers and farmers all of their lives. Their needs are never fully met, and the laws that prohibit Marijuana is just another way to “keep us in our place”.
It is a shame that we cannot grow Marijuana and/or Hemp on our own property, legally.
So in all reality, we never truly own anything, including our own bodies and minds.
Marijuana and Hemp prohibition is just one of many dire problems which our country is facing today. But if we could “free these plants”, that were put on Earth by God, to be used accordingly, then maybe, just maybe, it would be a sign of us being able to take back our country’s freedoms for all people.
SMKrider: In My Opinion
I can be reached by email at ShereeKrider@usmjparty.org