Skip to main content

tv   Weed 2 Cannabis Madness Dr. Sanjay Gupta  CNN  July 8, 2014 9:00pm-10:01pm PDT

9:00 pm
we obviously have no idea what really happened, whether it was a misunderstanding as the husband of one to ladies told a reporter. whatever happened, this debacle is buried up to its next on the ridiculist. hey, that's it for us. dr. there is real science now out. >> flat out wrong about weed. >> a year-long journey that changed what many of us thought about marijuana. myself, included. >> i think we've been terribly misled. >> we used to only picture this. then we showed you this. medical marijuana treating seizures, pain, dozens of other ailments. >> charlotte is doing amazing, just better and better each month. >> we learned this isn't the end of the story, just the beginning. >> i think we went from about
9:01 pm
150 calls a month to over 4,000. >> there are still so many issues to be addressed. the federal government says marijuana is among the most addictive drugs with no medicinal value. many serious scientists say that are wrong. >> it's a medicine. >> it's the politics of pot. putting policy against patients. trapped in the middle, sick qualified people who want medical marijuana but can't get it because it's illegal. >> if you try to go back to a higher width -- >> we'll be arrested. >> all for a plant that you're going to see can work wonders for pain in a grown man, ms in a woman at the peak of her life, and seizures in a little girl. we traveled the globe asking scientists, patients and policy makers for a solution. i'm dr. sanjay gupta, and this is "weed 2, cannabis madness." this time our journey begins in new jersey. ironically called the garden state. it's the summer of 2013, a quiet neighborhood diner about to
9:02 pm
become the site of a headline making confrontation. between a frantic father, brian wilson and the outspoken governor chris christie, all over wilson's 2-year-old daughter vivian. >> i was wounding what the holdup is, it's been two months now. it's well documented. >> these are complicated issues. >> very simple issue. >> i know you think it's simple. >> it was a david and goliath moment. you've got a governor who is one of the leading republicans in the nation and this dad who has a little girl who he's desperately worried and in love with who he wants to dot best thing for her. >> you see, brian wilson's daughter vivian was dying. her brain continuously locked in seizures and nothing had worked. the wilsons went out pinning their hopes on medical marijuana. they read about marijuana on the internet and they saw stories about it saving lives.
9:03 pm
like little charlotte whose story was told on the first documentary weed. >> i remember i was at the gym on the treadmill and i saw a preview, watching tv. i was so excited because i knew everything was going to change at that moment. >> they hoped marijuana would rescue vivian from the virtual prison she lives in where bright lights, loud sounds and patterns can induce a seizure. that's why she wear as patch on her eye. >> if she could be blind folded, she would be seizure free because it's everything. she can't leave the house. >> reporter: vivian, do you know this book? vivian first played together in her dark, quiet, very controlled bedroom. it quickly became clear how tremendous a toll this isolation takes on vivian. but also, the entire family. no one here as a normal life, including vivian's older sister, 4-year-old adele.
9:04 pm
>> like every day on the way home from school, can we stop at the park? we can't stop at the park because vivian's nurse leaves at 5:00 and we have to be home. >> what would adele say about that? >> she will say we can't -- when we pass the park, she says those kids are at the park but we can't go to the park because vivian has seizures. it kills you, you know. >> they are so severely affected. >> new york university neurologist is vivian's doctor. he's one of the world's leading epilepsy experts. >> i think for the family whose have given western medicine a really good chance and there are a lot of them and western medicine failed their children. >> but the wilsons found themselves in the political cross fire of pot. marijuana was legalized for medicinal use in new jersey before christie took office in january of 2010. it was done by his democratic predecessor but once in office, christie blocked the legislation
9:05 pm
for more than a year. he eventually signed one of the strictest, most limiting marijuana bills to date, just six approved stores in the entire state and perhaps most damaging for vivian, no edible forms of marijuana allowed, which was crucial. the only option then for this 2-year-old would be to inhale it. >> dr. brian wilson. >> protests e resulted across the state and that's why brian wilson took things into his own hands that day in august. >> have you heard from our doctors? >> it became known as the dustup in the diner. >> i mean, it was all over cnn, it was national news, like libya vivian wilson's father. it was crazy. >> hi, how are you? >> nice to meet you. >> it's a battle these families understand better than anyone. >> there is no hope left in
9:06 pm
miami. there was nothing else to do. >> each of these families wanted medical marijuana for their sick children. they also fought to get it in their home states but lost, so they moved to colorado where it's legal. desperate and determined they have become known as medical marijuana refugees. >> i came from arizona. >> we left a lot back in alabama. >> unfortunately, we had to break the news to his folks we will not come back to texas. >> more than 100 families moving to get the marijuana they had seen in our last documentary. it's called charlotte's webb, named for the little girl we profiled. it doesn't get you high but loaded with a chemical called cbd which seems to help reduce seizures, even when nothing else has worked. it changed charlotte's life. >> because the drier it is, it will extract more. >> reporter: thousands called to ask the growers, josh stanley and his brothers if it could possibly work for their children.
9:07 pm
>> you tell them potentially it could. nothing is for sure. i said well, unfortunately, you have to move to colorado. >> the reason they have to move to colorado is what? >> because anything that's grown in colorado has to stay in colorado. >> that's the most absurd idea we have to do this to get medicine. >> but it's the law. marijuana is illegal federally so if you're prescribed in a medical marijuana state, even if it works, your last hope, you're out of luck. you can't carry it out of state lines. so for the wilsons completely uprooting their lives and moving seemed to be the only option to help vivian. >> it's the hardest thing in the world to have to do. we have all of our family here. we have -- there is so much we would have to do. >> but just weeks after the dustup in the diner, when the wilsons allowed us to film their story exclusively, we received word governor christie eased the stance.
9:08 pm
>> 70 votes in affirmative -- >> eventually, the state of new jersey allowed the edible form after all but the wilsons still had another road block, they count get their doctors to prescribe it. >> there is a certain level within the epilepsy community of just fear that you could do more harm than good and until you go through the standard process, you should be conservative. >> and by standard process, he means scientific research and as you're about to learn, that is nearly impossible to conduct here in the united states. >> it's time to reform the system. >> i love you so much. have fun on the airplane. >> leaving people like the wilsons in a painful and potentially deadly limbo. the exclusive journey to save their daughter when we come back. ups is a global company, but most of our employees
9:09 pm
live in the same communities that we serve. people here know that our operations have an impact locally. we're using more natural gas vehicles than ever before. the trucks are reliable, that's good for business. but they also reduce emissions, and that's good for everyone. it makes me feel very good about the future of our company. ♪
9:10 pm
add brand new belongings from nationwide insurance... ...and we'll replace destroyed or stolen items with brand-new versions. we put members first. join the nation. ♪ nationwide is on your side ♪
9:11 pm
9:12 pm
it's high noon at the dispensary in colorado springs. business is booming at the dispensary. customers range the range of illnesses. >> always a busy day. >> each strain a different high, each bud a different benefit, each leaf treating a different ailment. >> everything from menthol floss to ak-47 -- the names, did you name any of them? >> no, no. >> corky names.
9:13 pm
>> it's tough. it requires persistence, patience and luck. >> this is josh stanley and his five brothers. they are a tight-knit group working together to make misdemeanors in the cannabis. >> how have things changed here? >> you're looking at new crop. this is a never ending cycle. >> the stanleys sell many different kinds of medical marijuana. high thc strains tend to be the money makers but are famous for growing a less profitable plant called charlotte's web, low in thc but high in cbd. it's the key therapy chemical doctors are using to treat everything from chronic pain to lupus to crohn's disease and epilepsy.
9:14 pm
>> 88% of this farm is a high cbd low thc. i mean, this is the exact opposite of what people think of when they think of marijuana. this won't get you high? >> you can set the hippy population of colorado loose and you'll be looking at a bunch of disappointed hippies. >> they aren't concerned about disappointing hippies, they have seen this plant changed lives. they have a new lab with scientists turning their plants into medicines. brother joel stanley is in charge of that part of the business. >> it isn't a world i knew. we had to dive in and learn how to make plant extract. >> he was leery to get involved. he avoided marijuana all his life. in 2009 he was working in texas in the oil fields when his oldest brother josh asked him to join the newest family business. >> i laughed because i thought
9:15 pm
it was just a foot in the door to legalization. i didn't think it was medicinal. the first three patients i met were cancer patients who looked me in the eye and told me that if they didn't have the anti nausea effects and the appetite stimulant and the help sleeping, that they wouldn't have survived chemo therapy and i believe them. >> that was sort of your time of conversion? >> that was my turning point. >> and now on this mountain side they expect to grow more than a thousand pounds of medical marijuana in 2014. some is sold to smoke, some to ingest. >> so we're talking about this and turning it into this. >> that's right. >> the scientists here, some of whom avert that major pharmaceutical companies are focused on making the medications and maintaining strict quality control. >> we can test for pesticides. we can test for molds, mildews,
9:16 pm
solvents. >> testing for contamination, it's one of the biggest hurdles to creating a safe product. in fact, studies on the contamination of medical marijuana are pretty alarming. one los angeles case found dangerously high levels of insecticide in two out of three medical marijuana samples. it's one of the things that concerns main stream doctors about medical marijuana, safety, as well is uniformity and reliability. >> the major issue that physicians have is in the consistency of the product, how do you know what the person is getting? and the answer is we don't. >> neurologists dr. edward is the chief of denver's health epilepsy program. he's one of several main stream doctors researching the stanley's marijuana after hearing about its dramatic results. >> you know, my ears perked up like maybe this is something we should be investigating. >> for years dr. moss steered clear of cannabis because the
9:17 pm
government identified it as illegal but when he recently surveyed his own patients, 33% of them were using medical marijuana. >> i was shocked at how many people were using it. >> what did you expect before the numbers? >> i was guessing maybe 5, 10%. >> that is part of the problem. medical marijuana patients have self-medicated for years, anxious to get relief but with little guidance how to do so. that's something that concerns the wilsons. >> i don't know if these people in new jersey know how to grow these types of strains. >> these are people with poll -- political connections. >> in 2013 there was one dispensary open in the state that don't sell the strain. it could be a year vivian might not have. >> every seizure does damage to her brain, body, how much longer do we wait?
9:18 pm
>> they have got to do something. not ready to move, they want to still try it. so they will leave their familiar neighborhood behind to see firsthand if the marijuana they have heard so much about could help vivian. >> do you think this will work? >> for me it has to work. if it doesn't, then i don't know where that leaves us. >> just days later, vivian wilson gets ready for the trip of a lifetime, a trip filled with danger since the stimulation of a plane ride could induce seizures high up in the sky. vivian's future and life is on the line.
9:19 pm
♪ f provokes lust. ♪ it elicits pride... ...incites envy... ♪ ...and unleashes wrath. ♪ temptation comes in many heart-pounding forms. but only one letter. "f". the performance marque from lexus. peoi go to angie's listt for all kinds of reasons. to gauge whether or not the projects will be done in a timely fashion and within budget. angie's list members can tell you which provider is the best in town. you'll find reviews on everything from home repair to healthcare.
9:20 pm
now that we're expecting, i like the fact i can go onto angie's list and look for pediatricians. the service providers that i've found on angie's list actually have blown me away. find out why more than two million members count on angie's list. angie's list -- reviews you can trust. at legalzoom virtually all yourof important legal matters in just minutes. now it's quicker and easier for you to start your business, protect your family, and launch your dreams. at legalzoom.com we put the law on your side.
9:21 pm
9:22 pm
i love you so much. have fun on the airplane. >> it was a trip that began with a tearful, anxious departure. >> and fear for vivian's fragile health. she suffers from life-threatening seizures, so much worry, yet thankfully, this part of their journey was surprisingly smooth with her grandmother and father by her side, vivian was seizure free. the long plane ride from new jersey to colorado ends with a warm welcome. >> hi, precious. >> vivian is finally going to try medical marijuana, cannabis and the stanley brother haves been working hard to get it ready. just an hour after her arrival. >> brian, brian, she's going with her face.
9:23 pm
>> she's seizing, bring her over. >> vivian starts having seizures, one after the other. >> brian rushes to get her anti seizure medication. it's hard on vivian and on brian and some of his doubts start to rush back in. >> it's always stressful wherever we go. i have all faith this will work but with anything you try, there is always that nagging suspicion we'll be the ones that it doesn't work for. >> despite the rough night, the morning begins with hope that relief is in sight. to meet the strict state sanders, brian establishes residency in colorado by renting a small apartment. vivian meets with two doctors for a thorough physical. >> how many seizures per day -- >> both d doctors approve her need for cannabis and write recommendations for medical marijuana to treat epilepsy. >> it went good?
9:24 pm
>> yeah. >> by sunset, they are ready. little vivian has no idea what is about to happen. >> okay. hey vivvy, ready? >> that's it. right there. a tiny amount of oil squirted into her mouth. >> good job, sweet heart. >> now they just watch and wait. over the next 24 hours, vivian's seizures slowly decrease. >> look what i got. >> how is she doing? >> she's doing really good. >> to celebrate, a family picnic. outside, filled with activity, balloons with patterns, decorations, and lots of sunlight. any of these things could have previously induced a seizure. it's an emotional moment for a dad watching his daughter finally have freedom.
9:25 pm
>> she used to be able to do this outside, but not, yeah. come here. [ laughter ] >> brian believes the marijuana is working but as you're about to see, vivian is by no means cured. >> here we go. here. >> after an hour in the direct sun, vivian has a seizure. brian rushes to inject the potent emergency drugs and an oxygen mask in case the same drugs stop her from breathing. >> we pushed it. >> now with the epilepsy rescue drug still in her system, you can see for yourself just how powerful they are. >> she's absolutely doped upright now. watch her try to walk or do anything.
9:26 pm
>> this is difficult to watch, but it does raise this important point, the traditional drugs used to treat epilepsy can be more dangerous than cannabis. vivian's doctor, epilepsy expert. >> i think one of the reasons marijuana is probably safe is related to the receipt tors, which if you have too much stimulation or inhibition, they don't shut off breathing. >> that's key, the drugs impact many parts of brain including the brain stem that can shut off functions if you take too much. marijuana doesn't do that and that's why it's unheard of to have a marijuana overdose. it's one of the reasons so many doctors are starting to change their minds on cannabis. but we are talking about children, young children, and that's going to understandably raise concerns. the latest research shows that
9:27 pm
some trains of marijuana do have a profound effect on the brains of users under the age of 25. >> thc in good studies is linked to psychiatric disorders, memory disorders in children under 16. even though it's low thc, thc is more potent so there may be long-term side effects. >> what do you worry about? >> we don't understand the long-term effects in brain development. >> these are tough choices, made even tougher when you uproot your whole life for marijuana. >> i do a lot of fundraising to get us here. >> we left, daddy at home in cleveland. >> they come from all walks of life, a stay at home mom from ohio, an insure salesman from alabama. >> it's exciting to think about the opportunity for her to hold her head up, to be able to look at us and say mom and dad. >> but now, they are trapped.
9:28 pm
you can't take the medicine back to florida, can you? >> they will take my child away, i'm pretty sure. that's my fear. >> they would take your child away for giving him his medicine? >> yeah. >> this is the problem between the federal and state level, this conflict is really driving families apart. that's just crazy. >> it's absolutely crazy. >> i try not to think of it at this point. i'm trying to get quick results in vivian, so we know this is the path to keep continuing on. >> and over the next couple of the days, they see some startling results. vivian goes from 75 seizures a day to just ten. the wilsons are now more convinced than ever, they have to keep vivian on marijuana. but how? financially, they aren't ready to move here full-time and yet, new jersey doesn't have the resources to grow what they need.
9:29 pm
so as they head home, they don't know what the future holds. >> we're just going to have to hope for the best in the meantime. >> their hope could lie with a brand-new pharmaceutical from these top secret fields overseas, an exclusive look inside when we come back. 3rd and 3. 58 seconds on the clock, what am i thinking about? foreign markets. asian debt that recognizes the shift in the global economy. you know, the kind that capitalizes on diversity across the credit spectrum and gets exposure to frontier and emerging markets. if you convert 4-quarter p/e of the s&p 500, its yield is doing a lot better... if you've had to become your own investment expert, maybe it's time for bny mellon, a different kind of wealth manager ...and black swans are unpredictable.
9:30 pm
add brand new belongings from nationwide insurance... ...and we'll replace destroyed or stolen items with brand-new versions.
9:31 pm
we put members first. join the nation. ♪ nationwide is on your side ♪
9:32 pm
we're driving deep into is the english countryside, just a couple hours outside of london. we're going to visit gw pharmaceuticals, they make medicines from the actual marijuana plant.
9:33 pm
although this is done with the expressed permission with the government, we had to sign confidentiality agreements that will not disclose where we will be located. marijuana is illegal in just about every part of this country, except for the secret labs that we're about to enter. wow, this is pretty spectacular. do you get used to the smell? >> i'm not particularly partial to the smell very much. >> if you had smell vision on your tv, you would be over powered by now, it's a lot of pot. this greenhouse is the size of a football field, and they have several more just like it throughout the united kingdom. the lighting, temperature, humidity, all monitored by a top secret central computer that keeps those conditions constant. and there are dozens of scientists regularly tending the plants. >> this is probably the most tlc
9:34 pm
for a weed i've ever heard of. >> one would hope so, absolutely. >> dr. jeffrey guy who runs gw pharmaceuticals says it has to be this way because they are trying to do something no other pharmaceutical company is doing, turn the medical marijuana plant into a potential drug. when you look at this, what is in your mind? >> we can make generations of medicines over the next 10, 20 years. >> medicine for ptsd, epilepsy, diabetes and chromes. the key to making the medications is inside these simple looking leaves and understanding the hundreds of chemicals. those are the canibinoids. >> we can say what they do so each one represents a potential new medicine.
9:35 pm
we can breed into the plant, the materials that will provide with us a range of beneficial effects. >> designer cannabis plants are then reduced to a whole plant extract and that's crucial according to the grand daddy of all marijuana research. >> when they tried to make drugs using certain compounds for marijuana, it's met with limited success. why is it that when you take just a certain compound out of the marijuana and make a drug it doesn't seem to work as well? >> well, one of the reasons possibly is because the thc was better when it was there. so if you have both, it works better. >> he calls it the entourage effect and that's what gw is doing. every extract will have all the plant's chemicals in it. the extract is packaged as an approved prescription spray. in order to increase the chances of getting that approval, every step from growing to harvesting
9:36 pm
to manufacturing is all carefully controlled, regulated and rigorously tested to strict standards so that every plant, every extract, every dose is identical, safe, and effective. it is an expensive and painstakingly slow process. it took hundreds of millions of dollars and a decade to develop the first drug for the unrelenting pain and spasms brought on by ms. is this a place you walk? as a neurosurgeon myself, i was curious how well this medicine could work. teresa pointer was diagnosed with ms in february of 2004. for years he struggled with pain and exhaustion. she tried just about everything but found the drugs prescribed were either ineffective or had awful side effects and one day in 2005, she read in the newspaper about clinical trials for a marijuana-based medicine. have you ever tried cannabis? what were your thoughts on it?
9:37 pm
>> no, since i was a little girl, my mom said to me, don't do drugs, don't do drugs. >> nearly wheelchair bound, teresa was desperate. she tried it, a spray to the back of her throat several times a day, even once during our interview. her pain and muscle spasms are well-controlled. >> just the relief to be able to have a couple of sprays before i go to bed and feel comfortable enough to just go to sleep. >> the risk of side effects are pretty low. >> neurologist dr. elih sober prescribes them. >> some feel slightly dizzy and light headed, if you want to call it slightly stoned. some might feel slightly tired. >> only 6% of patients stop taking the drug because of the side effects, more than 50% did get relief and continued on the drug. all of that makes it a potentially powerful medicine for the 2.3 million ms sufferers worldwide.
9:38 pm
it's available in 20 countries but not the united states where it's still under investigation. why so much more stringent in the united states? >> there is a greater level of rigger at all levels of regulating inquiry in the u.s. >> like any drug in the united states, cannabis would have to go through rigorous testing, research and approval by the fda, but after that, things start to get tricky. you see, marijuana also needs the approval of other governmental agencies like the national institutes of health, and the drug enforcement administration, this is of course, difficult if not impossible. why? because in the united states, marijuana is illegal and classified by the government as a schedule one controlled substance. that means it is considered to be among the most addictive drugs and not recognized as having a medicinal benefit and that's why what i'm about to tell you is so ironic. >> the irony is that the federal
9:39 pm
government has patented one of the important chemicals in the plant. >> the government of the united states has a patent on a substance for medicinal purposes at the same time they say it has no medicinal purpose. >> exactly. >> mayo clinic researcher is talking about united states patent number 6630507 held by the u.s. department of health and human services for the exclusive use of cannabinoids for certain treatments. >> it feels like a dog in the manager that the federal government is sitting on this wonderful thing, wonderful thing and not letting anybody else do anything with it. >> and when we went to the government to ask about it, none of the agencies involved would comment. >> we're being handcuffed by the government preventing us from doing the right trials. >> in fact, a 2013 search through the u.s. national library of medicine revealed 2,000 recent papers on marijuana
9:40 pm
but the majority of them explored the harm, only 6% investigated the benefits. many believe that's the result of a system gone awry, resulting in marijuana becoming one of the country's most controlled substances and many people believe that has to change. but it was one of the experts calling for that change that surprised me the most. dr. norah, she's the director of the national institute on drug abuse. that's the very agency that many say has blocked a good deal of cannabis research. >> if the researchers feel that it's an impediment during science, scientific work, this is something that should be at addressed. >> on the front lines of that battle, the son of a political dynasty, coming up, how this anti drug crusader is fighting to get cannabis drugs to patients like vivian. moderate to severe crohn's disease is tough,
9:41 pm
but i've managed. ♪ i got to be pretty good at managing my symptoms, except that managing my symptoms was all i was doing. ♪ when i finally told my doctor, he said my crohn's was not under control. ♪ he said humira is for adults like me who have tried other medications but still experience the symptoms of moderate to severe crohn's disease. and that in clinical studies, the majority of patients on humira saw significant symptom relief. and many achieved remission. [ female announcer ] humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened; as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure. before treatment, get tested for tb. tell your doctor if you've been to areas where certain fungal infections are common, and if you've had tb, hepatitis b, are prone to infections, or have flu-like symptoms or sores.
9:42 pm
don't start humira if you have an infection. if you're still just managing your symptoms, ask your gastroenterologist about humira. with humira, remission is possible. ask your gastroenterologist abooh no.ira. who are you? daddy, this is blair, he booked this room with priceline express deals and saved a ton. i got everything i wanted. i always do. he seemed nice. that's keeping you from the healthcare you deserve. at humana, we believe if healthcare changes, if it becomes simpler... if frustration and paperwork decrease... if grandparents get to live at home instead of in a home... the gap begins to close. so let's simplify things. let's close the gap between people and care. ♪
9:43 pm
let's close the gap between people and care. ♪ you want to save money on car insurance? no problem. you want to save money on rv insurance? no problem. you want to save money on motorcycle insurance? no problem. you want to find a place to park all these things? fuggedaboud it. this is new york. hey little guy, wake up! aw, come off it mate! geico. saving people money on more than just car insurance.
9:44 pm
adele, can you put some shoes on? >> it's early november 2013 at the wilson home. >> vivvy. >> a few days earlier, vivian's parents were surprised by a call by one of the two dispensaries open in the entire state of new jersey. they say they have a strain that of cannabis that is low in thc and high in cbd. >> good morning. >> after a year of fighting governor chris christ tee. >> this is vivian. >> and months searching for doctors to prescribe cannabis. >> she has seizures, correct? >> the wilsons are finally getting marijuana in their
9:45 pm
hometown. once they pick up the cannabis at the dispensary, they are confused. >> it's .13% thc and.13% cbd? >> go in and ask. >> this isn't like picking up a standard prescription at the pharmacy. there are no standard doses of federal guidelines. >> your cbd is 3. -- >> cbda. >> that's the one you want. >> but they leave uncertain, not knowing exactly what they are getting. and here is another problem, what they get at the dispensary are leaves, vivian can't use. >> how many grams are we going to do? >> half ounce. >> it's up to her parents to make medicines out of the leaves. for that they are using this crock pot to activate the plant and turn it into an oil. >> so once we have oil, we still don't know exactly what the ratio is because it's not going to be exactly what this says because it just went through a heating process. >> it's trial error. something we heard from so many
9:46 pm
medical marijuana patients. >> i do a mixture of thc, cbn and cbd. >> frank had to experiment with many different strains of marijuana to find the right kind to treat his chronic pain and arthritis from an old football injury. >> i'm experiencing extreme pain in my knee and i want to get medicated faster, do a dab. my knee will be sore, swelling on the joint, maybe i'll sit down and smoke flower. >> prescribed painkillers made him sick so he was desperate and willing to try something new. >> in 15, 20 seconds is the pain went away. it was go, exited the body. >> the most common use for medical marijuana is pain. early studies suggest that cannabis binds to receipt tors in the brain and body to reduce inflammation and provide a buffer against pain. yet according to stanford trained dr. margaret getty, there is no one set standard cannabis treatment for pain.
9:47 pm
>> patients are kind of let loose in the sense they have to try things and find out which strain works and might be different at different times. >> frank works in the stanley's lab where he helps to make medicines he takes morning noon and night. a variety of different strains. he says his pain is gone and functions well. it's a mix that works for him. >> is it risky to be doing the trial error process? >> there are some risks if you don't know your baseline for what milligram, edibles that you can ingest. if you ingest too much, you could pass out. >> some stories i've heard have been people that followed recipes and i've had children admitted to psychiatric emergency rooms psychotic from the product. >> that's why he feels job number one is to make medical marijuana safe, reliable and effective. one way to do that is through research, which is why since the summer of 2013 he's been trying
9:48 pm
to begin the first ever united states research trial on gw's new cannabis based epilepsy drug. but the hurdles have been nearly insurmountable. >> if you're trying to look at the potential medicinal benefits, it's very hard to get funding. >> after many months, he was able to secure funding and approval from his hospital, new york university but getting the government, specifically the fda, dea and burro of narcotic enforcement to sign off was nearly impossible. one of their biggest issues was security. as part of this, you had to have a safe put in. >> this is new and only for this project. >> a 1200-pound safe watched by multiple security cameras and alarm systems all for a drug so low in thc it can't get you high and with that he is waiting for final federal approval. >> the failure of the federal
9:49 pm
government through it's regulatory arms, dea, fda and like has led to a public health debacle. >> patrick kennedy with his deep political connections and famous name is pushing the feds to fast track cannabis research. >> they ought to get at it quickly, the fda and federal government. they ought to just get it done. we just need a greater urgency to this issue, overall. >> it's a bold statement for a recovering addict whose been outspoken making medical marijuana legal in any way is dangerous, that more children will be able to access it and more smokers will become addicted to it. he thinks the only way to remove the risk is to have all medicinal marijuana products regulated, studied and strictly controlled. >> i think making this truly a medicine as opposed to forcing people to go on the street and try to buy something that they
9:50 pm
can't determine whether it is what it says it is. >> but he understands why extremely sick patients want marijuana now. remember, his father died of brain cancer and his brother lost his leg to cancer. >> i wouldn't have grudged my of my family with cancer and they've all had cancer anything that would have mitigated the chemotherapy. >> it's why kennedy is meeting with everything from the fda to the white house to speed things up. but it takes time. time the wilsons don't have. they're finally going to try their new homemade cannabis oil. >> we weren't able to get it test order anything. so we really still have no idea what it is. which is why we have to be really cautious. >> behind closed doors brian tries it to make sure he doesn't get high. he doesn't. >> open up. >> so vivian is next.
9:51 pm
it doesn't work. nothing in new jersey seems to work for them. vivian's seizures won't stop. is moving the only option left for the wilsons? ups is a global company, but most of our employees live in the same communities that we serve. people here know that our operations have an impact locally. we're using more natural gas vehicles than ever before. the trucks are reliable, that's good for business. but they also reduce emissions, and that's good for everyone. it makes me feel very good about the future of our company. ♪
9:52 pm
this is kathleen. setting up the perfect wedding day begins with arthritis pain and two pills. afternoon arrives and feeling good, but her knee pain returns... that's two more pills. the evening's event brings laughter, joy, and more pain... when jamie says... what's that like six pills today? yeah... i can take 2 aleve for all day relief. really, and... and that's it. this is kathleen... for my arthritis pain, i now choose aleve. get all day arthritis pain relief with an easy-open cap. add brand new belongings from nationwide insurance... ...and we'll replace destroyed or stolen items with brand-new versions. we put members first. join the nation. ♪ nationwide is on your side ♪
9:53 pm
could help your business didavoid hours of delaynd test caused by slow internet from the phone company? that's enough time to record a memo. idea for sales giveaway. return a call. sign a contract. pick a tie. take a break with mr. duck. practice up for the business trip. fly to florida. win an award. close a deal. hire an intern. and still have time to spare. check your speed. see how fast your internet can be. switch now and add voice and tv for $34.90. comcast business. built for business.
9:54 pm
the wilsons' optimism is fading as fast as the falling february rain. they've rented their house, packed up their lives, finally headed to colorado. >> we figured there would be a way to make it work.
9:55 pm
>> it's crazy. it's just crazy that the program is such a failure. >> that's vivian's nurse screaming for help. vivian is having a bad seizure. >> it's okay, baby. i know. did it hurt? >> she's got now these welts. she is having afternoon seizures. something is not right. >> they would be one of vivian's last seizures in this home. soon after, a house once filled with life is empty. >> all right. >> the wilsons are leaving everything behind. >> bye snowman. >> when you look at some of these situations, families uprooting their lives, moving to colorado, what goes through your mind? somewhat as a doctor but just as a citizen? >> i think it's a strange point we have that these people can't
9:56 pm
get access for the most severe cases to something that might be very helpful for their child, might even be potentially life-saving for their child. >> something davinski is hoping to change. he has finally gotten green light to start on a cannabis epilepsy drug. it's too late for vivian, but not for the hundreds of children in the trials. >> it is exciting to be at this point in medicine where we're going to hopefully in the near future get some answers about a drug that has been part of our species' history for thousands of years. >> but those answers won't come immediately. in the meantime, the stanleys aren't slowing down. >> looks really good. >> they finally succeeded in getting charlotte's web out of colorado and into the hands of patients in california. >> your medicine. >> yay! >> how about splitting families up? >> now the brothers have their sights set nationally. in states like oklahoma. >> don't make them pick up and have to move to a state like colorado.
9:57 pm
>> in fact, 15 more states are now considering legalizing medical marijuana. >> there are other people in this room who need the immediate gratification of that drug. >> the ever growing support of mainstream medicine doesn't hurt. in a recent poll of nearly 2,000 doctors, 76% said they're in favor of using medical marijuana for a needy patient. now six medical marijuana states have expanded their laws to allow card-carrying medical marijuana patients to bring cannabis medicine into their home state. yet unfortunately for the wilsons, new jersey is not one of them. >> it will not happen on my watch, ever. i am done expanding the medical marijuana program. >> literally the same hour he said that, our friend's daughter was taken off a ventilator after a 26-hour seizure. >> 15 months old. >> and you're like, yeah, that could be vivian, you know. >> tuesday, february 25th, denver, colorado.
9:58 pm
brian is setting up house, unpacking boxes, picking up a two-month supply of vivian's new cannabis medicine. >> that will be 667.37 for the total. everything is in place when vivian and adele arrive a few days later. after settling in, vivian a ready for her first dose. >> so this is it? >> it's been a long road. >> it really has. it really has. >> she is a little tired, but ready. >> ready to take some medicine? the first of many doses. the beginning of a new life. >> you okay? >> i'm so happy with this neighborhood. and i needed something to make us really positive. i needed to be somewhere that i was going to absolutely love. >> and create new memories. yet there is always the constant reminder of everything they left behind.
9:59 pm
>> we're stuck here. vivian can't leave this state as things stand now. >> she can't cross any borders. and they're just not going to -- the grandparents aren't going to get to see their grandchildren much. and it's really sad. >> in the midst of the sadness, a realization that the sacrifice might have meaning. >> was this a battle that was won? >> clearly, we're here now. vivian does not have what she needs in new jersey. so in that respect we didn't win. but there is a conversation going on, and people are talking about medical marijuana a lot more. >> how great! >> and for the wilsons, other patients and dedicated scientists, all who believe this plant might be able to change lives. >> it's our new house. that. >> is a victory. ♪
10:00 pm
this is "cnn tonight." i'm don lemon. this is a tale of two cities. chicago reeling after 82 people are shot over the fourth of july weekend. new york, fearing the violence is spreading with more and more shootings every day is a simple change in police tactic to blame a former cop and a councilman will go head to head. plus, what does this guy have in common with disgraced radio host anthony cumia of the opie & anthony show? what you can and can't say. my legal experts are here to tell you who is right and who is wrong. plus, the latest surprise in the hot car case. and we know what happens when animals attack such as sharks and bears. but what happens when the tables are turned and humans are the bad guys? the heartbreaking and inspirational story of the crying elephant. and as always, we want tow

17 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on