For many years, Stephen Taylor watched his two daughters suffer from a chronic auto-immune disease called Crohn’s. Then one time, he decided to try out medical cannabis and see if it can ease help his daughters.
Taylor’s daughters are now adults; Morgan is 21 years old while Ariel is 25 years old. They both have been hospitalized repeatedly because of their condition.
Crohn’s disease, together with ulcerative colitis, is known as Inflammatory Bowel Disease affecting more than 80,000 Australians. IBD is largely unpredictable since there’s a significant variation in the pattern and degree of symptoms that affect each patient.
A disease flare could lead to severe inflammation in the rectum, colon, and gastrointestinal tract can become so severe that sufferers would have to be hospitalised and some would need surgery.
Morgan and Ariel said they no longer feel like they are living but are just surviving as they battle their disease and the side effects of the drug they are taking.
According to Morgan, she had suffered severe side effects from conventional drugs. One time, she had gotten really bad arthritis, her knees had swollen and she could not walk for days. Another time, she had experienced a severe anaphylaxis reaction to a drug called Infliximab, where her throat started to close up, her face got swollen, and she got rashes on her skin.
Meanwhile, Ariel almost died from hemorrhaging. She recalled that she was so sick that she couldn’t eat and she was in constant pain.
Taylor asked doctors about a medical cannabis-based treatment to help his daughters deal with the pain and to avoid another severe side effect from happening. However, he found out that no doctor would take on the Therapeutic Goods Administration application process for legal medical cannabis access. This is because the process is very lengthy and arduous.
So, Taylor decided to take matters into his hands and started planting his own cannabis and making his own cannabis juice.
The sisters showed remarkable improvement after taking the cannabis juice. They attest that their lives had changed completely.
In fact, Taylor said he believes Morgan went into remission.
Morgan said that within a month of taking cannabis juice, she was already exercising and was gaining weight.
However, Taylor’s home was raided by police authorities and he is facing jail. According to NSW Police, Taylor had 107 cannabis plants.
Taylor explained that he needs a lot of plant material as the girls consume a total of 180ml of cannabis juice per day. He said that the ideal juicing is 30ml, three times a day.
The state of medical cannabis in Australia
While medical cannabis has been legalized in Australia more than a year ago, it is notoriously very difficult to get hold of.
Iain McGregor, professor of Psychopharmacology at the Sydney University’s Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics, told ABC News that an estimated 100,000 Australians could be getting cannabis illegally for various health issues.
There is a massive discrepancy between what many Australians are doing covertly, and what the overt approved system is not delivering, McGregor said.
The Federal Government, on the other hand, said that it was trying to streamline the cannabis license approval process by getting rid of the red tape in each state. (You can read about our report on this matter here.)
McGregor also explained that drinking cannabis juice was not the same as smoking weed. With juicing, the consumer does not get to take in as much THC, the psychoactive component of cannabis that creates a high.
According to him, drinking juice allows you to get THCA, which is another component that has very strong anti-inflammatory properties.