Cannabis Has Helped Reclaim My Life from Lyme Disease
My parents spent $200,000 trying to get a proper diagnosis of Lyme Disease and then help for me; cannabis is the ONLY thing that helped.
At age 16, I got extremely sick. Bedridden. Couldn’t walk or talk. I was in SO MUCH pain, I literally couldn’t function. No one knew what was wrong…
I tried everything from medications to physio, chiropractors, vitamin IV drips, accupressure, spine procedures, sinus surgeries. Nothing worked. My parents took me to multiple doctors, driving me all across Canada, trying to figure out what was wrong with me.
I was told it was “boy problems.” Then, maybe brain cancer.
They gave me opiates, which helped a bit but never fully took away my pain.
I was slowly dying. At age 17, I couldn’t walk. I collapsed on the floor and that was serious enough for doctors to fly me out to Children’s Hospital in Vancouver. There, I was diagnosed with degenerative disc disease, osteoarthritis and herniated discs. That explained the severe spinal pain, but the doctors were stumped when it came to my other symptoms. They gave me gabapentin and that was it.
My parents spent up to $200,000 looking for help… then we found a naturopathic doctor who was also a MD. I was skeptical because I’d seen naturopaths before. I’d tried all their gimmicky diets and supplements to no avail. But, I was willing to do anything to get back to “normal.” This was the doctor that saved my life!!
A Diagnosis – Finally
At age 19, I was finally diagnosed with late stage Lyme Disease, co-infections and CSF hypotension.
The Lyme treatments made my symptoms worse (“herx”) , I was so nauseous and my headaches were so bad. It was then that my mom turned to THC oil and made me brownies and THAT was the only thing that helped in any way.
At the time, I was also on a fentanyl patch for pain – Yup, an 18-year old on fentanyl patches!!
At age 23, I decided that I didn’t want painkillers running my life any more, they weren’t even helping my pain at that point. I’m 24 now and I can say proudly that cannabis has saved my Life. While I was getting my Lyme treatments, I met my wonderful BF who educated me more to MJ and its healing effects.
It’s been one year off opiates, and treating my pain and Lyme with CBD oil and bud. I wish doctors would have recommended it to me in the beginning instead of throwing anti depressants and painkillers at me.
I typically use hybrids or indicas because they help with sleep and relax my muscles.
My favorite strains are:
- Tora Bora,
- Animal Cookies
- Sour diesel.
I can honestly say I have no idea what I’d do without cannabis. It is MEDICINE! It HEALS me without horrible side effects and it helps me find that person I was before my illness. And it motivates me. It’s helped me do things I never thought I could do again, like going to the beach and going out with friends.
I’m hoping by sharing my story that I can help at least one person, or bring awareness to the hell that is Lyme, if not treated in time.
From RxLeaf: Lyme Disease and Cannabis – The Science
Lyme disease is a bacterial infection from a tick bite. The symptoms may come on within a few days of the initial bite, or over a month later. To make matters even more challenging to diagnose, the symptoms vary significantly from person to person. Mild flu-like symptoms are common in the beginning (but not universal), and more severe symptoms, like the ones described above, come on as the disease progresses.
According to the Government of Canada, some of the more serious long term effects of untreated Lyme disease include:
- Severe pain, especially in the joints
- Bell’s Palsy
- Body wide aches
- Heart disorders
- Neurological disorders
While the signs are better understood today than only a few short years ago, it can still take months (or years) for patients to get a proper diagnosis. The symptoms are confusing, scary, and progressive. It often goes undiagnosed.
In the case highlighted above, the patient struggled most with extreme pain that didn’t seem logically related to any other medical condition. In the end, she found cannabis worked above all other medications to reduce inflammation, joint pain, and swelling. And like others with similar chronic pain experiences, she found it more therapeutically valuable than all the opioid prescriptions doctors pushed on her.
We Need More Studies
At the time of writing, there were no studies (even in animals) looking at cannabis for the treatment of Lyme disease. That said, we already know many cannabinoids are strong anti-inflammatories, better than opioids for pain, and have antibacterial qualities.
Through the plant’s ability to work on all these issues at the same time, it may provide better relief to the patient with advanced Lyme disease than a conventional prescription. With more study, we might also discover it combats the disease itself. As always, more research is needed on this fascinating theory. We also need to study Lyme disease, as we still know so little. The more we know, the better.