West Bloomfield mom says medical marijuana helped with chronic pain but it's not for everyone

Posted at 6:35 PM, Feb 04, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-04 18:35:54-05

WEST BLOOMFIELD, Mich. (WXYZ) — Metro Detroit doctors say there are many conditions medical marijuana can truly aid, but the legalization of recreational pot has brought some new concerns.

One mom in West Bloomfield says medical marijuana hasn’t just helped, it has given her life back.

"It was debilitating, it was not being able to get out of bed on the worst days,” said Angie Roullier.

Angie Roullier diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy as a teen. If that isn’t tough enough she also struggles with CMT.

“Charcot Marie Tooth, CMT which comes with neuropathy, nerve pain, muscle weakness, spasms, things of that nature,” said Roullier.

At one-point Angie was taking up to 12 pills a day to try and keep the painful symptoms at bay and those pills which came with their own dangerous side effects.

"I was having these huge dire kidney issues which were debilitating on top of my disability,” said Roullier.

Using cannabis, Angie slowly weaned herself off the other drugs and she now only takes pot and a blood pressure medication.

"It took me about a year and half to kick them all,” said Roullier.

Dr. Shaun Jayakar from Ascension St. John Hospital says there are many conditions that pot maybe the right prescription for… from glaucoma to anxiety and even chronic pain, it can ease symptoms.

The benefits?

“You don’t have the constipation, less risk of overdose, and physically you're not going to get addicted to marijuana, “said Dr. Jayakar.

“As far as a sleep aid, it’s much better than that patient who becomes addicted to Valium, or Ambien,” said Dr. Jayakar

He believes marijuana could also be an answer in the opioid crisis.

“There’s an opioid epidemic people are dying left and right, we don’t see that with marijuana,” said Dr. Jayakar. “We’ve had some patients that are able to come off opiates and take the marijuana instead and have good results.”

While it may work for some people… it’s not for everyone!

“We know impaired memory is one of them, so people forget stuff and if you’re a younger patient, it can actually affect your brain development,” Dr. Jayaker added.

“Other people when they smoke, they do become paranoid and super anxious so it’s a case by case basis," said Dr. Jayakar.

Smoking marijuana can also cause emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

“Study wise it’s not conclusive that marijuana will increase lung cancer but intuitively speaking, it kind of makes sense that it would increase of certain types of cancers,” said Dr. Jayakar.

Dr. Jayakar says it still needs to be overseen by your doctor and cautions people not to self-medicate.

“They shouldn’t be scared, come in, discuss with us and we can help guide them in treating their conditions,” said Dr. Jayakar.

As for Angie, she keeps her doses small, just enough to take away the pain but those small amounts have made a world of difference.

“My quality of life has just gone off the charts,” said Roullier.