Jul 10, 2018
Transcripts for this show are below pic:
On this episode of PodcastDX we get a physician's perspective on medical cannabis. This is part three of our medical cannabis series. Our guest, Dr. Robert Weil, D.P.M. specializes in orthotics, sports medicine, and podiatric medicine. He also hosts a radio show and co-authored the book #Hey Sports Parents.
Episode 15 Medical Cannabis Dr Weil.mp3
Lita [00:00:15] Hello. Welcome to another episode of PodcastDX. The show that brings you interviews with people just like you whose lives were forever changed by a medical diagnosis.
Ron [00:00:25] I'm Ron.
Jean [00:00:26] I'm Jean Marie.
Lita [00:00:27] And I'm Lita. Collectively we are the hosts of podcast d x. If our listeners have any questions or comments related to today's show they can contact us at PodcastDX at yahoo dot com through our website PodcastDX dot com on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or Instagram.
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Jean [00:00:53] Please keep in mind that this podcast is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regime and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on this podcast.
Lita [00:01:15] This medical cannabis series is very enlightening. It was interesting to hear how a patient looks at the process of registration for medical cannabis as well as a local bud tender. Next we will be talking with the physician to get a viewpoint of medical professional using cannabis to treat medical conditions. So today we've got with us Dr. Robert Weil Greetings Dr. Weil.
Dr Weil [00:01:38] Nice to be with you. How are you.
Lita [00:01:42] I'm doing very well. Thank you sir.
Dr Weil [00:01:45] Wishing you good luck with your podcast. It's a great idea. The podcast dx. So good luck with that.
Lita [00:01:53] Thank you sir. Thank you. And if I could dive right in. My biggest question is when a doctor prescribes medical cannabis for a patient. How do they know what product they're going to prescribe basically.
Dr Weil [00:02:08] Well I think there's a lot of information. Again I'm a sports podiatrist Lita and I don't deal with chronic pain patients. So I really don't really prescribe it in my practice but I've been around it for over 20 years. With the professional football players I've seen. You have a very serious athlete I’ve seen, what we're dealing with what today is one of our most traumatic crises which are pain medicine.
Lita [00:02:38] Yes sir.
Dr Weil [00:02:39] The opioid crisis.
Lita [00:02:40] Right.
Dr Weil [00:02:41] And and many of these individuals found. That pot was very helpful even if they used it under the table and tried to get away with it and all of these other things. Today we have a much more proper system where patients can talk to their individual physician which is what we recommend they do. They also can for example they can google you know what conditions are covered with medical marijuana in my state.
Lita: [00:03:12] Right.
Dr. Weil [00:03:12] And they then could get a full array and I think that you spoke about that earlier with others in your podcast so they could get some real information about the process on how to get a card how to talk to the doctor. But one of the biggest problems has always been the stigma where people say oh my gosh how can I talk. I think that's now really, really over the rainbow as in the past two weeks. We have seen the first FDA approved cannabis involved medication for epilepsy called epi dialects. So now once Big Pharma catches I think everything will become a lot easier. But. Again to discuss with your primary care physician and if your primary care physician doesn't want to discuss it with you then get another opinion.
Lita [00:04:13] Well that's true. That's true in anything you know you go to one doctor and if you're not happy with the results you there are so many doctors you can go and look for. Absolutely. Now if, if doctors as they’re trained, are taught that marijuana is a drug of abuse or a gateway drug. Then how is it that you can create it to be more mainstream. How can you change that in your in your career field.
Dr Weil [00:04:44] Yes. Well actually you know the famous Sanjay Gupta who is the medical correspondent Journalists with CNN. For the past 15 years he's a neurosurgeon. And he's done a three or four parts therapy is called Weed. I would recommend anybody to. Take a look at that because what's interesting is Dr. Gupta went into this very skeptical very much like what you're talking about doubtful regarding you know what was real, what wasn't. You know because again the stigma of a gateway drug.
Lita [00:05:24] Right.
Dr Weil [00:05:24] And that, you know in the United States marijuana federally is still considered a division one was a drug like heroin and some of these, it's nuts. So the the. Expose from dr gupta was just probably a month or two ago but in his, four or five hours it was all over the world. He's dealt with medical experts and researchers from all over the world and he has done a 180 and absolutely is now a real advocate in being able to take advantage of what has basically been a drug quote- unquote, with very little if any side effects. And the most of this stuff has been hit or miss regarding. There is some addiction. It is minuscule compared to the nightmare of.
Lita [00:06:24] with opiods .
Dr Weil [00:06:24] opiods.
Lita [00:06:24] Right.
Dr Weil [00:06:24] . Which is pain pill. And again most of what. Medical marijuana has been involved in is helping pain wherever that pain is. Again many of these athletes they were dealing with athletic injuries and you know trying to you can imagine in the National Football League which to this day still and marijuana or medical marijuana they would rather you go to the doctor and get involved on prescription painkillers. It's nuts it’s going to change.
Lita [00:06:58] So you know they're still they're still doing drug testing in athletes for marijuana.
Dr Weil [00:07:04] Sorry.
Lita [00:07:04] They still do drug testing with athletes for marijuana.
Dr Weil [00:07:08] Yes. Yes they do.
Lita [00:07:11] oh wow.
Dr Weil [00:07:11] One of the interesting individuals whose name escapes me professional football player with Dr. Gupta's special who has had tremendous relief documented relief medically supervised relief with medical marijuana with his sports related injuries his concussion etc. and they made a big deal to go to the National Football League and have them approve it. The long story short they did not.
Lita [00:07:43] Wow.
Dr Weil [00:07:43] This publicity they still have their head in the sand. Well so you can get suspended still if you find even if you've got a doctor prescribing it. And this is some of the you know the I've written many many articles in my recent book. "Hashtag. Hey sports parents" there's a chapter in that book called youth sports and drugs.
Lita [00:08:09] Right. right.
Dr Weil [00:08:09] And I talked about the history of drugs in sports goes back forever. A very very deep lake. Whether it's performance enhancing drugs that everybody is familiar with.
Lita [00:08:22] right.
Dr Weil [00:08:22] although I labeled differently performance surviving drugs where many of these athletes are dealing with injuries they're dealing with pressure to come back maybe before they're ready. So pain oriented conditions for instance in Illinois there's a long list of conditions and you can get help even finding doctors that will help you with this if yours won't. So people have to get past the stigma of the gateway drug and all of the what was that famous movie in the 30s or the 40s of "Reefer madness".
Lita [00:09:05] Oh.
Dr Weil [00:09:05] that's. That was the movie that started or at least really perpetuated this craziness about you know putting marijuana in the same league with let's say cocaine or.
Lita [00:09:22] Heroin.
Dr Weil [00:09:24] heroin Or other kinds of prescription that which is nuts.
Lita [00:09:28] Right. Right. When they do a drug test and in the sports industry are they testing for THC or CBD.
Dr Weil [00:09:37] Probably both because THC which is the part of the of the marijuana that that is involved getting somebody high or buzz is often left out. Of the medical marijuana preparations.
Lita [00:09:51] . Right. right
Dr Weil [00:09:52] . So that the positive effects of reducing pain reducing anxiety you know one of the funny lines about the use of marijuana for pain was marijuana didn't get rid of the pain. It just made you not care about it.
Lita [00:10:10] I remember that. Right. Yes.
Dr Weil [00:10:12] Like laughing gas in the dentists office.
Lita [00:10:15] right.
Dr Weil [00:10:15] You know it doesn't give you the novocaine effect. You don't care that much about it. I’m being a little facetious.
Lita [00:10:22] But that’s not how it works.
Dr Weil [00:10:22] Tremendous research tremendous research that's being done today. We'll be leaving out the part of the marijuana that gets people buzzed or high but that includes Still being discovered endless array of conditions. That. Marijuana seems to help. And again another little facetious point of view when you talk about overdoses 60000 deaths a year in the United States from opioid related deaths related with all of that and the only I think overdose from marijuana or death with marijuana which is if a hundred bales, a 100 pound bale of marijuana fell on your head.
Lita [00:11:13] (laughter) Yeah I hear it.
Dr Weil [00:11:14] from overhead in the garage.
Lita [00:11:15] Right.
Dr Weil [00:11:16] Other that they're virtually none, and this has been one of the biggest things for medicine to accept. Again we have to understand that Big Pharma is a huge huge industry and the United States. Which is one of only two countries in the world which allows TV advertizing of prescription drugs that shocks a lot of people. And we are deluged with advertizing all day. So all of us think that there's a pill for everything and it's got to be a pharmacy.releated pill and you know holistic holistically on my show the sports doctor my radio show for over 20 years I have had guests who practice holistic medicine. The complementary medicine and you know, Western medicine has been very very slow to catch on to that. You know not that.
Lita [00:12:14] Because the money isn't.there
Dr Weil [00:12:15] Fabulous.
Lita [00:12:16] There's no money in there.
Dr Weil [00:12:18] It's true. Now there's going to be gigantic money in it.
Dr Weil So this is why we'll probably see a changing of opinions. But the idea you know when you watch any commercial with with drugs on the side effects.
Lita [00:12:35] right,.
Dr Weil [00:12:35] To drive anybody crazy.
Lita [00:12:36] Right.right I laugh every time I see one of those commercials.
Dr Weil [00:12:39] complimentary medicine allows whether it's acupuncture whether it's other types of holistic natural types of medicine and you know marijuana around the world is one of the one that is very very popular. And now we're finally paying attention that it can be helpful. Sometimes it could be miraculous in this special. They were epileptic children who had dozens of seizures a day five year olds 8 year olds whatever the ages were. And the medical marijuana was a miracle to these children. Yet they had to move to another state.
Lita [00:13:20] Just to take those.
Dr Weil [00:13:20] They couldn't. Yes it was nuts.
Lita [00:13:23] Yeah.
Dr Weil [00:13:23] Absolutely ridiculous. That's where a family is faced with that kind of. A ridiculous delema. They live in New Jersey. They were not allowed to get it and they moved to Colorado. But then, and Dr. Gupta who again is a brain surgeon and who was, you know watching this incredible help that the medical marijuana was providing. So this is something we have to take very very seriously. Not a panacea. It's not a cure all but it happens to be a very very safe. Alternative to especially in the world of pain medicine.
Lita [00:14:05] I see. You know just out of curiosity. You're the only physician that we have interviewed. We typically interview patients as you know. Do you find in your. Peers in other physicians that it's a similar. Attitude towards this. I. Are doctors coming around to this.
Dr Weil [00:14:29] They're coming around big time. The same may come around to take exercise seriously. You do the best medicine today is exercise and proper nutrition. But the same way they've been slow in really getting very very involved in the mind body connection.
Lita [00:14:48] mhmm.
Dr Weil [00:14:48] Which people you know doctors laughed at years ago the fitness side of things. I mean come on have. A third of the states in the country or more are already accepting medical marijuana. And I think that every physcian now understands that it makes a lot of sense to be able to be educated about this like we recommend that patients become educated. And I think that things are changing very very rapidly as the that doesn't mean there aren't some real conservatives left. I mean the next thing the federal government. You know you've got our attorney general walking around. Still not willing to make changes. Obama didn't change it on the Federal level.
Lita [00:15:34] right right.
Dr Weil [00:15:34] So it definitely is a challenge.
Lita [00:15:39]Right, I see that. Do you have any recommendations for patients before they go to a doctor to see if they have an idea that they would like to try medical marijuana are there any suggestions?.
Dr Weil [00:15:51] Again, I, you know you could google anything. But again you could Google for example what conditions are covered in my particular state.
Lita [00:16:01] right.
Dr Weil [00:16:01] You know you're in a state that allows medical marijuana and they will not only get a very very complete list but they will also get the ability of getting some feedback and help from somebody who will get back to them and be willing to discuss it with them so they can become more educated and be able to ask their doctor are the right questions. So absolutely you can become educated parents can become educated to be able to see you know is this something that I should look at seriously and what is and how do I get a card How do I go through that process. And those kinds of things you can put Google get information where there will be a educated individual willing to call you back and talk you through. That doesn't mean you're going to follow through. But you got to be educated.
Lita [00:16:59] right, right.
Dr Weil [00:16:59] On reality of what makes sense and what some of these conditions are and there are all sorts of different conditions in so many areas that are dealing with chronic persistent kinds of pain. There’s a condition called reflex sympathetic dystrophy. We would see it following the surgery following an injury all of a sudden the wires that are involved in healing neuro- wires are messed up and somebody has. A nightmare. (cough) excuse me with pain. And heavy medicine and all sorts of different kinds of treatment very difficult and that's an example of one of the ones whether it's about feeling muscular dystrophy.
Lita [00:17:55] right.
Dr Weil [00:17:56] Fibromyalgia
Dr Weil may turn into a tremendous list now and. I have had patients in the past five six seven years ago who talked about. That it was difficult because of exactly what you said. Resistance from doctors resistance from the authorities where almost you were being labeled. People were scared. You know I'm going to get a card. They're going to think I'm a criminal. Knock on wood all that's over.
Lita [00:18:23] Good good. Thank you Dr. Weil for spending some time with us today and giving a physicians look at medical marijuana. For our listeners please pick up Dr. Weil's book " hash tag. Hey sports parents" and go to his Web site. The sports doctor radio dot com. For more information. Until next time.