Q: My husband has had several major back surgeries over the last couple years, and currently goes to a pain management clinic to get narcotic, opioid medications to help deal with his pain. The state we live in doesn’t currently have any type of medical marijuana program, and there’s nothing positive progressing in the foreseeable future. Every month when he goes to get his prescriptions, he is required to submit a urinalysis test where they test him to make sure he tests negative for marijuana and other “drugs”, and also confirm that he is taking the medications they prescribed to him.
He’s always telling me that the prescription medications only help to partially ease the pain, and that smoking marijuana along with, or instead of, seems to help multiple times more. But, because of the drug testing that they require each month, he is only able to smoke for about 1-2 weeks a month, before he has to stop and stay clean for the drug test. He has been smoking marijuana for over 25 years and would prefer to use strictly marijuana to help alleviate his pain, but with no medical marijuana program, and due to the costs and reliability of the black market, he has to rely on the prescription medications that are covered under his insurance, until somehow he can become a medical cannabis patient.
Is there anything that he can do, or any other options that he might have, to be able to use marijuana for the whole month, instead of having to stop a week or two before for the monthly drug test?
Thank you much for any advice, and anything else you know that may help. — Susan M.
A: Well Susan, I am extremely sorry to hear that your husband is constantly dealing with chronic pain. We all know that cannabis has lots of medicinal qualities including anti-inflammation and pain relief qualities.
Unfortunately, too many years of government propaganda and the failed “War On Drugs” has shaped a lot peoples opinions in a negative manner. Doctors are no exception, just a century ago, cannabis was widely used by doctors to treat many different illnesses. Over the last 100 years though, science and research has been ignored in favor of profits, with doctors prescribing more and more harmful medications than ever.
Good thing for us though, is that more research is being done, and more verifiable proof is becoming harder for everyone to ignore. The CDC recently released guidelines that urge doctors to no longer test for marijuana when conducting drug screening for opioid medications being prescribed by places such as pain management clinics.
Download and Read the Guidelines:
CDC Guidelines for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain
I would print off these guidelines from the CDC, and kindly bring them to your doctors attention to start a dialogue and find out your doctor’s stance . Until you find out if your doctor is even open to the idea, you’ll probably have to stick to your current 2 weeks on/2 weeks off schedule.
I wish you the best of luck, and hope your doctor is open to you helping alleviate your pain more effectively. — Bert C.