Pubdate: Mon, 08 Jul 2002
Source: Florida Today (FL)
Copyright: 2002 Florida Today
Author: Gary Storck


Frank Montelione's letter "Medical marijuana is not needed" July 3 makes me 
wonder what Internet sites he's been visiting to get his information.

Certainly not the site that displays the Institute of Medicine Report, a 
federally funded, $1 million study commissioned by ex-drug czar Barry 
McCaffrey in 1997 and released in March 1999 
( requested by me.

The study notes, in discussing the use of marijuana for pain, "All of the 
currently available analgesic (pain-relieving) drugs have limited efficacy 
for some types of pain. Some are limited by dose-related side effects and 
some by the development of tolerance or dependence. A cannabinoid, or other 
analgesic, could potentially be useful."

In examining the purported link between cancer and smoking marijuana, the 
study concluded, "There is no conclusive evidence that marijuana causes 
cancer in humans, including cancers usually related to tobacco use."

Montelione also apparently is unaware that medical marijuana does not need 
to be smoked. There are a variety of other ways to ingest it, including 
inhaling it through a vaporizer, in foods, as a liquid tincture, in 
capsules or even as a suppository.

Apparently, Montelione never has known anyone suffering from serious 
illness for whom all conventional treatment options have failed, and 
marijuana is the only medicine that works.

Then he might find some compassion to light his way out of his self-imposed 

Gary Storck, Madison, Wis.
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