Pubdate: Wed, 22 Jun 2005
Source: Wall Street Journal ( US )
Section: Pg A11
Copyright: 2005 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
Author: Chris Daly
Bookmark: ( 
Cannabis - Medicinal )
Bookmark: ( 
Chronic Pain )


If a substance can provide a therapeutic benefit to a patient, then 
his or her physician should be permitted to prescribe 
it.  Amphetamines have been shown to aid adrenal gland problems, yet 
they are all but impossible to obtain legally.  The British use a 
"cocktail" that includes heroin to control extreme pain while 
allowing the patient to remain lucid and functional, yet this 
cocktail is not available in this country.  And the list goes on.

That these drugs are also used illegally has no place in any 
discussion concerning their medicinal use.  Prescription drug abuse 
is fast becoming the leading cause of addiction in this country.  If 
the Supreme Court's "logic" in the marijuana case is carried to its 
logical conclusion then all of the currently legal pain killers, 
psychoactive drugs, etc., need to be outlawed.  I don't think even 
the DEA would suggest that.  If a doctor is found to be prescribing 
drugs for non-therapeutic reasons then there are laws already on the 
books to prosecute them and their "patients."

Let's not tie the hands of the overwhelming majority of medical 
professionals who are only trying to do the best for their patients.

Chris Daly

Yucaipa, Calif.  
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