How It All Began
It all started when…
As a practicing family physician, helping patients manage their chronic pain was part of my every day caseload. With the opioid epidemic ravaging our community, like so many places around the world, I knew there had to be a better way and turned my attention to learning everything I could about the emerging field of cannabinoid-based medicine.
Several years on, I’ve treated thousands of patients with a range of complex conditions. I’ve seen huge quality of life improvements in patients with chronic pain, and successfully treated patients suffering from sleep disorders, chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, anxiety, migraines, responsive behaviours associated with dementia, childhood epilepsy, responsive behaviours associated with autism, among others.
In an era where most North American medical schools still do not include the endocannabinoid system in the core curriculum, I’m passionate about developing research in this emerging field and educating other healthcare practitioners so they have the tools they need to feel comfortable offering cannabinoid-based medicine as a treatment option to their patients.
Not only does cannabinoid-based medicine have a superior safety profile compared to most other medications, its multimodality means that it can treat more than one symptom at a time. This often allows practitioners to reduce or deprescribe some of their patients’ other medications. Since the number of medications a person is on is one of the leading causes of hospitalizations due to adverse drug events, this is a really big deal.
As the body of evidence continues to grow, the opportunities for improved symptom management, harm reduction and quality of life are extremely promising. In my opinion, cannabinoid-based medicine has the potential to be one of the greatest healthcare revolutions of our time.
We still have a long way to go before cannabinioid-based medicine is offered as a mainstream treatment option, but I’m encouraged by the progress being made in the field, grateful to be working with practitioners who are committed to furthering their knowledge and happy to be able offer cannabinoid-therapy to my patients in Ontario.