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Johanns Gammel, PTA, works with a patient who has multiple sclerosis (MS) that produces leg pain that often is "horrible." The patient's legs twitch and spasm, causing them to jump even when the patient is seated in his wheelchair. Those episodes can make it difficult for Gammel to follow a PT's plan of care. Medical marijuana (MMJ) helps ease his symptoms, says Gammel, a physical therapist assistant (PTA) who co-owns EDGE PT in Paramus, New Jersey.

Medical Marijuana

After using marijuana, "sometimes, the spasms, twitches, and pain subside within 1 minute," Gammel says. "This allows me to stretch his legs, which are tight from the disease and from his being in a wheelchair. The effects of MMJ help him get the proper manual therapy in accordance with the PT's plan of care in order to be able to move."

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  2. Legal marijuana is the fastest growing industry in the US: Report. The Huffington Post. January 28, 2015. https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/01/26/marijuana-industry-fastest-growing_n_6540166.html
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  5. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The health effects of cannabis and cannabinoids: The current state of evidence and recommendations for research. 2017. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24625.
  6. Vandrey R, Raber J, Raber M, et al. Cannabinoid dose and label accuracy in edible medical cannabis products. JAMA. June 23/30, 2015;313(24):2491-2493. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2338239?alert=1. Accessed November 2, 2017.
  7. Drug scheduling. Drug Enforcement Administration. https://www.dea.gov/druginfo/ds.shtml. Accessed October 29, 2017.
  8. Understanding drug schedules. Healthy Children.org. https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/teen/substance-abuse/Pages/Controlled-Substances-Not-Just-Street-Drugs.aspx. Accessed October 29, 2017.
  9. Department of Justice announces significant tool in prosecuting opioid traffickers in emergency scheduling of all fentanyls. https://www.dea.gov/divisions/hq/2017/hq110917.shtml. Accessed November 13, 2017.

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