Schizophrenia Society of Sask. Warns Doctors

Schizophrenia Society of Sask. Warns Doctors
Posted by CN Staff on May 22, 2004 at 08:26:43 PT
By Lana Haight, The StarPhoenix 
Source: StarPhoenix
Doctors should be wary when asked to prescribe medical marijuana, says the Schizophrenia Society of Saskatchewan. "Marijuana is detrimental to someone who has schizophrenia. It's a bad mix," said Kathleen Thompson, executive director of the Schizophrenia Society of Saskatchewan.The society has written the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan urging doctors to be sure their patients do not have a history of schizophrenia prior to prescribing medical marijuana.
"Members of our society reported that their ill relatives have been hinting at their interest to seek out medical specialists in an effort to have marijuana prescribed for their chronic pain," wrote Grant Rathwell, then-president of the society."Since many of these consumers can be very persuasive and manipulative, we felt that we should make you and your members aware in the event that some of these persons whose medical history is unknown to your members come shopping around for such prescriptions."Thompson says many people with schizophrenia are addicted to drugs or alcohol as a way to cope with their illness.Finding a doctor to prescribe marijuana would justify their smoking it and they would have one less thing to worry about because they couldn't be charged with possessing the drug.Snipped: Complete Article: StarPhoenix, The (CN SN)Author: Lana Haight, The StarPhoenix Published: Saturday, May 22, 2004Copyright: 2004 The StarPhoenixContact: spnews thesp.comWebsite: Articles:Cannabis Link To Schizophrenia Rise Linked to Schizophrenia, Depression May Cause Depression, Schizophrenia
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Comment #3 posted by Ethan Russo MD on May 24, 2004 at 03:58:09 PT
Here is the Study
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Comment #2 posted by afterburner on May 22, 2004 at 09:26:28 PT
Cannabis and Psychosis by Ethan Russo MD the study you are looking for, E_J, but something to think about. Linking 'madness' and 'marihuana' is a standard play out of the 'Reefer Madness' playbook. I agree that caution should be used, but last resort, not enough research = delaying tactics.
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Comment #1 posted by E_Johnson on May 22, 2004 at 08:46:35 PT
Dr. Russo I remember a study -- can you find it?
I have seen with my own eyes reports of a study that schizophrenic psychiatric patients in Los Angeles who smoked pot had fewer hospitalizations than those who did not smoke pot.It was reported somewhere a few years ago but I don't remember when.I don't know if it was published but it was referred to in the LA Times.One reason they might want it is because the medications they are given have awful side effects like muscle spasms and without pot there is a temptation to not comply with medication, to avoid side effects.Haldol is what they give the poor people and Haldol makes people shake horribly. My brother had the shakes for 18 hours on Haldol and after that he refused to take it ever again and went off his meds and went crazy and ran away to the streets again thinking everyone was trying to kill him.It took me another year to get him back on another medication. Now he's fine, because I told every doctor within earshot that he cannot have Haldol.I'll bet the poor schizos in LA COunty who have to take Haldol are more compliant with their regiman when they use pot to combat those awful shakes it causes.That was my explanation for the observation reported in the Times that schizophrenics who use pot in LA County are less likely to be hospitalized than those who do not use it.But maybe there is another explanation as well -- maybe pot is an antipsychotic and we're being jerked around yet again what else is new?
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