John Prinz Uses Marijuana to Manage Disabling Back Pain
John Prinz Uses Marijuana to Manage Disabling Back PainNovember 20th, 2017 by Cindy Perlin
John was one of the earliest adopters of medical marijuana. He lives in California, where it has been legal since 1996. John injured his back at work in 1992 when he was 31 years old. He had multiple surgeries. Three discs were removed and hardware placed in his back. He now has five more discs pressing on his spine. By the time he tried medical marijuana he was on 1100 mg of Oxycontin and many other pills. He had a spinal cord stimulator trial that failed. A morphine pump was considered. Jack believes that if he had gotten the morphine pump he would be dead by now.
For many years now John has managed his pain exclusively with marijuana, though it took him two years to get off the opioids. Because Jack uses a large dose of marijuana and it is not reimbursed by Workers Compensation, Jack grows his own, which is legal in California, and makes his own oil. He reports that he feels very good on marijuana. Once he starts taking his daily doses he feels like he’s 31 again.
John estimates that he saves his insurer over $70,000 annually by replacing his prescription drug use with marijuana. He is frustrated that he can’t get insurance coverage and that other injured workers can’t get access to medical marijuana. He says that every injured worker in California is an opioid user because they can’t get coverage for anything else.
John isn’t taking the situation lying down. He has lobbied his state and federal representatives repeatedly and tells anyone who will listen about the superiority of medical marijuana over opioids.