Book review: “Cannabis for Lyme disease and related conditions”
In my role as a Lyme disease advocate and support group leader, I regularly hear from people who are sick and suffering and kicked to the curb by the medical establishment. Many are afflicted with serious pain, seizures, nausea, insomnia, or other intractable manifestations of Lyme. Those who have the resources to see a Lyme-literate practitioner may find relief after treatment—though not always. And many others have no access to Lyme-literate care whatsoever. (For more information about why, see our coverage of the IDSA’s stranglehold on Lyme diagnosis and treatment.)
I have no personal experience with medical marijuana. But more and more, I’m hearing from Lyme patients who have tried it for sleeplessness, pain, and other symptoms. Many people say it helps them significantly. Others report no change at all. However, as medical marijuana becomes more available, I also hear from many patients seeking specific information about using pot for Lyme disease.
Because medical marijuana is legal in some places and not in others, the whole area is murky. There are bits and pieces of information floating around on the Internet, but no place that pulls it all together specifically for tick-borne disease. Thus, Lyme patients who do choose to try pot are pretty much flying blind.
A new book, Cannabis for Lyme disease and related conditions, hopes to fill the information gap. Author Shelley White, now publisher and editor of the magazine Public Health Alert, suffered serious Lyme symptoms for many years. Then, she tried cannabis oil, an extract of the marijuana plant.
White does not call the substance a “cure” for Lyme disease, but states, “Cannabis oil greatly reduced the severity of my symptom picture and improved my quality of life while going through Lyme treatment.”
This experience prompted her to learn more about the medical use of marijuana and produce this book to help inform other people with Lyme.
She explains the chemical make-up of cannabis, its different strains, and various ways it can be taken. She discusses the use of cannabis with assorted Lyme symptoms, along with safety issues and legal concerns. She cites scientific research. An appendix includes first-hand accounts by people who have successfully used pot for Lyme disease.
I do not give medical advice and I am not suggesting that the reader try marijuana. However, if you do plan to try treating Lyme with pot, I suggest you do your homework first. And part of that would include reading this book.
TOUCHED BY LYME is written by Dorothy Kupcha Leland, LymeDisease.org’s VP for Education and Outreach. Contact her at email@example.com. On Twitter, she’s @dorothyleland; LymeDisease.org is @LymeNews.
- May 23, 2015 at 5:13 am
Kicked to the curb. What a polite way to put the ridicule, neglect & absolute ignorance of every doctor I’ve ever been subjected to in PA. The only LLD I ever met, a smart compassionate man had his licence revoked after pharmacists refused to fill his precriptions. Now pharmacists get to make my health care decisions, too.
45 years into the lyme life I don’t hope for a cure … for me, but do hope this will be worked out before my lyme positive children are broken by lyme, too.
An infusion (boiling water poured over buds) and left overnight is a very simple preparation of cannabis that I find very helpful. During an intense pain spiral I find 1/4 cup every 45-60 minutes as needed very effective. Only side effect I can report is the urge to nap and the munchies. Do not drive or operate equipment.
- September 30, 2015 at 12:48 pm
Trisha, do you drink it? Is the pot a special strain for pain?
- February 27, 2016 at 7:24 pm
About 6 years ago I was bit by a tick.I pulled it out and developed a rash with a circle around it. I then went to a bug bite specialist and the first test came up negative. He waited 2 weeks and tested me again and I was positive for lyme.
He gave me 30 pills to take over the course of 2 weeks.I asked him what do I do when I finish the meds and he said “nothing, your done and don’t worry about it” no check up
Or anything after that. Since then I have had all kids of issues that are unexplainable and doctors tell me it’s nothing the pain starts in your shoulder then to your arm into your hand then it will be gone. I get sleepy 4hours after waking up in the morning,my hands feel tingly when I drive,I get nauseous when someone else is driving,when ever I get a check up from the doctor they tell me the prostate’s inflamed or liver is inflamed. It is always something different and when followed up on they send me for lots of testing and it turn out everything is fine. I believe these are affects from lyme
And the doctors just can’t figure these shielded issues which I believe is caused by the lyme disease.
Have you spoken with poeple having some of these same issues and what are they doing for to help them.
- March 15, 2016 at 8:58 pm
Get to a Lyme literate medical doctor (LLMD) or ND and get a Igenix Weatern Blot test. My wife went 14 years and thousands of dollars spent with sixteen + “doctors”. It may cost you $500 or so, but you can’t afford not to.
- May 3, 2016 at 6:50 pm
cannabis has been very good to me since I’ve had one for 35 plus years it hasn’t been accurate so far but when I have it my pain is much easier and my mood is so much better I can eat I can’t sleep I could do at least minimal work and thinking without it sometimes especially during herxheimer reactions on the shell of a person who is cannabis
- May 3, 2016 at 6:59 pm
I am using voice recognition and right now I am doing some herxing without cannabis because the night and in Ohio and there is no medical cannabis
pure outrage I have many times that is part of the disease when inflammation of the Mind
cannabis has been such a blessing and it is a blessing to many people who have to go underground to use it so many people are very ill they could never do alcohol street drugs gluten and sugar and they are pretty holy and only thing they’re hasselef by is there cannabis use if it gets known
if you are in an AuschwitzSurvivor or Lost Boys from Sudan unless you have Lyme disease you may never know agony of the heart past the normal human condition
God Bless the Child who has her own
I would love some cannabis now
but I’ll probably have to go with that and endure more suffering
thanks a lot William Randolph Hearst and Slinger and all you other creeps who took cannabis out of the people’s loving hand
- September 18, 2016 at 12:47 am
true it has helped my problems with lymes. today i am useing cannbidiol extract “CBD”. it works perfict for my symptoms. no brain fog. joints feel like new. and also helps for my other mental symptoms.
- September 18, 2016 at 12:53 am
the part of pot that works for the pain is cannbidiol. it takes the inflamation away. i use 5 drops of 600 mg cbd oil every day in my vaporizor pen. i mix it with my vape oil. i use no nicotine vape oil. with five drops 600 mg cbd. and feel like a new person. hoping long use kills my lymes for good.
- December 28, 2017 at 9:16 pm
Are you still using this Keith? Does it work and has it gotten rid of your lyme? I live in Colorado, so I can have some of my own plants for personal use. I want to give this a try. Everything adds up an dis very expensive.
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