Why I Changed My Mind on Medical Cannabis

Why I Changed My Mind on Medical Cannabis


11 year olds using pot?  Is that right, is that legal??


A professional couple with terminally ill twins quit their jobs to pursue a cure, orthodox drugs offered no solution, then they found medical marijuana.


What goes through your mind when I tell you that my 11 year old twins are using Marijuana?


Do you think to yourselves, Oh my God! The drug problem in the U.S is worse than I thought. How is it possible that 11 year olds get access to pot?  Maybe some of you thought, Geez! I wonder what medical condition these kids have. The truth of the matter is most of us don’t think about medicine when we hear the word marijuana.






I admit I’m embarrassed to admit that up until two years ago, I was completely misinformed about marijuana and I think many of our population is today.  I remember vividly in sixth grade being ushered into the auditorium to see a government sponsored documentary about marijuana, it was the most scary thing I’d ever watched, people jumping off buildings, car crashes, it was mayhem, but not once was there a mention of the possibility the cannabis was useful for medicine.




To be honest in retrospect, I’m a little angry about the propaganda that our government is putting forth, it’s even happening today. My big idea for sharing is that medical cannabis can be the healthcare success story of our lifetimes, but only if we all engage in learning the truth and ask our federal government to end prohibition of cannabis.

I’d like to introduce to you my twins, Addison and Cassidy believe it or not today’s their birthday eleven years ago today, only a mile from here they were born and came into our lives. Happiest day in my life, I love the date too, January twenty-third two thousand four, one two three four. Unfortunately Addi and Cassi suffer from a very are genetic disorder called Niemann-Pick Type C.


Mom and Marijuana saved the day.




This horrible disease is more commonly called, or what we call it as childhood Alzheimer’s. Their little brains are drowning in cholesterol, they’re missing a protein that allows them to process cholesterol both in and out of their brain cells. That causes neurodegeneration. They can no longer walk and they can no longer talk.  We were told that Addi and Cassi would be lucky to see their twelfth birthday.


Medical Marijuana, CBD and Epilepsy Research

Efficacy and Safety of Cannabidiol in Children and Young Adults with Epilepsy



After reeling with this devastating diagnosis. My wife and I dedicated ourselves to finding treatments for our twins in their lifetime. We gave up successful high-tech careers in Silicon Valley and we became research philanthropists, raising money for research, and ultimately we became biotechnology entrepreneurs. The discovered the compound cyclodextrin with the assistance from an amazing group of scientists, researchers and physicians from all over the world.




Every week the girls got an infusion, its eight hours long, it goes into their bloodstream the cyclodextrin. Every other week, like yesterday, the girls go to the hospital and they get a lumbar puncture in their spine, in order to get the cyclodextrin to reach their brains directly.  We think that the combination of those two routes of administration are slowing down the neurodegenerative progression, and hopefully maybe even stopping it.

Addi and Cassi were the first little pioneers to try this scary treatment.   I can tell you as a parent with no one in front of you paving the way, it truly is a scary moment.  Thankfully more than a dozen, a couple of dozen kids around the world including a few at the NIH are now engaged in further science and research on this experimental treatment, however the treatment doesn’t seem to have help with their seizures as a result of the neurodegeneration, and my kids had seizures almost daily.

A couple of years ago they were way more than one daily.  There were many a day. We had we started giving the kids traditional pharmaceutical medicines for their seizures and they worked some of them work some didn’t work, but the big problem was most seizure drugs cause your kids to become zombies, the whole purpose of the drugs is to essentially take away the stress or the triggers that cause seizures.




We had heard about a father in California that it was treating a young son who was intractable seizures, seizing constantly all day long and he was using cannabis medicine. We became interested, we contacted him, we learned more about the drug, ultimately we decided to pursue cannabis in earnest.

Did you know that the cannabis plant was used in as early as 2900 BC in China as medicine? Did you know that we in America were using in the 1800s fro a century we were using cannabis to treat a number of afflictions? Unfortunately in the early 1900s as you all probably know cannabis was prohibited and subsequently demonized and turned into a war, it’s a shame, it truly is a shame.




We became convinced that the oil would work, so we set out to find a supply of oil certainly. Cannabis has been legal in the great state of Nevada for almost a decade, surely we could just go out and buy some oil and give it to our kids, not true. There was no oil available in our great state.

So we set out to do it ourselves, first, we got physician approval to do the treatment of cannabis and then we became caregivers licensed caregivers in the state of Nevada which allow us to cultivate and make extractions oils from the cannabis plant to give to our kids. Everyday, three times a day the girls get a little oil like what you see here. This oil is extracted from a very special cannabis plant that’s high in cannabidiol or CBD as what we call it.

Unfortunately this oil by itself doesn’t even completely for our children stop their seizures, so we still use as small amount of pharmaceutical medicine, but we use less. We’ve reduced the number of drugs the kids take and we reduced the amount of dose from the few drugs we do give them and consequently our kids are not only having fewer seizures and shorter seizures they’re also bright-eyed and happy children again, they’re no longer little zombies.




This was great progress, but I thought to myself, holy cow!  There are two million epilepsy or seizure disorder sufferers in the United States who’s going to help those folks, those kids, those adults with these disorders and at that moment we decided to take what we had learned for our children and turn it into a commercial business here in the state of Nevada which was just preparing to allow that to happen and as Kylie mentioned we’ve endeavored to do, so and are now licensed to grow, extract and sell dispensed cannabis here in Nevada of the state of Nevada.

Marijuana and Chemo Treatment for Leukemia  in Children





Someday the federal government will end prohibition, but how many lives will be lost potentially or severely affected in the meantime? How many kids with seizures like mine will move their families will uproot from their homes to move to Colorado or not Nevada to get this medicine? How many cancer patients will be denied access to inexpensive and effective medicine to treat the side effects like pain and nausea that come with chemotherapy?


There is a groundswell of folks like me who understand the potential of cannabis and I’m grateful for that, the ironic thing is my some of my family and friends including most particularly my own mother are still not convinced. My mother is worried that the free access to cannabis is actually a threat to society and that perhaps the medicinal value doesn’t outweigh that threat and she sees the medicinal value in her grandchildren.





The problem I think is that really we just don’t have enough hard evidence yet to convince the skeptics. There just isn’t enough science and research to back the foundation that the medicines working the medicine is effective that’s useful for a large population of people.


That’s not to say that research doesn’t exist, there’s a mountain of evidence that the cannabis plant is useful, but there’s not a lot of clinical science hard clinical science to that effect. That’s the conundrum that’s the chicken and egg problem until the federal prohibition of cannabis ends until we take cannabis off the schedule of harmful drugs like LSD and methamphetamines that have no medicinal value until we removed cannabis from that list, which is insane that it’s on that list to begin with til we remove it from that list, research can’t take place.

If I came to University of Nevada Reno Medical center tomorrow with a million dollar grant to study cannabis, I would likely not have success.  It’s not that the scientist don’t want to study the plant; they are fearful of losing federal funding. It’s because they’d have to deal with the DEA and other regulatory agencies at the federal level which is a complex and expensive process. This is one of the many tentacles of the prohibition of cannabis that actually prohibits us from moving forward.




My own personal experience with cannabis, along with the evidence the science, is that I know absolutely certainly that cannabis has the potential to become the big healthcare success story of our lifetimes, but only if we allow it.


Editor's note: The we means pushing the Fed to have our voices not only heard, but our will acted upon.


Here Addy and Casey in a more recent picture for those of you who are still skeptical, perhaps for those of you like my mother who still worried about the societal downside of cannabis I ask you to look at this picture and consider the following by limiting access to cannabis for parents like myself you’re forcing me to make a decision between the lives or well being of my children and going to jail.

How is that a fair or rational set of thinking in modern society? Our 16th president the famous 16th president had very strong feelings about this subject, he said “Prohibition goes beyond the bounds of reason and it attempts to control a man’s appetite by legislation and makes a crime out of things that aren’t crimes…  

A prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded”.  This was Abraham Lincoln and he said these words before we have the experiences we had with alcohol prohibition or with cannabis prohibition.

Cannabis Oils - Oral or Vape?

Cannabis Oils - All you Need to Know




Someday the federal government will spend the money on research, someday the NIH will actually be actively pursuing cannabis as a treatment until that day comes a large group of us have come together and formed a non-profit, to organize and fund clinical research in cannabis in the private sector until we can use the academic institutions.






We call the foundation people can in honor of advocates like myself who over the last several decades have been saying what I’m now saying and whose words I didn’t listen to until my own situation demanded it. Never in her wildest imagination excuse me with my wife, have thought that today she would be a cannabis advocate, she was also misinformed let’s say about the plant until we needed to learn. Neither my wife nor I would ever believe that our young children would become the next generation of cannabis advocates.

I’d like you to meet them, please give a birthday welcome to my wife Chris, excuse me, my daughters Addy and Casey Hempel.  Would it be unkind to ask if we can sing a Happy Birthday.. Audience Singing…Yeah! Good Girls!      


MMJDOCTORONLINE NOTES: If you would like to look into medical marijuana, until 2018 in California and Nevada, you'll need a medical doctor's OK, a recommendation for medical cannabis to treat your conditions and symptoms.   Citizens can process the legal paperwork online - a licensed physician is standing by to take your request.   

The online process takes only a few minutes of your time, and patients don't have to pay if they are not approved.  We also provide Cannabis ID and grower's permits, all 100 % online.  Documents are used for online delivery services, cannabis dispensaries, cooperatives, cannabis clubs, compassion groups and other points of MMJ access.  




Why I changed my mind about medicinal cannabis | Hugh Hempel | TED University of Nevada     Source of the cover story.


Study: Medical Marijuana Helps Children Who Have Seizures

A new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine saw a nearly 40 percent drop in seizures for participants who were using the marijuana derivative called cannabidiol.


Medical cannabis trial offers hope for children with severe epilepsy

The 14-year-old boy is about to start a new trial of medicinal cannabis, run by Professor Ingrid Scheffer from the University of Melbourne.

Holy Smoke?


Molly Tankey knows medical cannabis may not be a miracle cure for her son David, who has severe epilepsy, but she's hopeful being part of a clinical trial will give him a better quality of life.  Research shows cannabinol is "as good as some of the best anti-epilepsy medications"  Of 120 children in study, 40pc had their seizures halved.  David was born with a condition known as Dravet syndrome. He had his first seizure when he was five months old, and now has up to nine seizures a month.


"If it could reduce his seizures, it would be fantastic."


7 Surprising Health Benefits Of Medical Marijuana For Children

Health Benefits Of Medical Marijuana For Children:  Tonics, oil, liquids, and edibles comprising medical marijuana extract offer several health benefits to children. Medicinal properties of medical marijuana not only help treat pain and nausea in kids, but also prevent the risk of development of serious ailments, such as cancer. Scroll down to learn more about the health benefits of medical marijuana for kids:

1. Reduces Seizures
2. A Healer For Crohn’s Disease
3. Chronic Painkiller
4. Alleviates Inflammation In Bones And Joints
5. Prevents And Treats The Risk Of Cancer
6. Treatment For Glaucoma
7. A Cure For Sleep Disorders


Mothers are treating sick children with cannabis oil – and it works

A mother in Peru who treated her ill son using cannabis oil - and saw him ‘reconnect with life’ - has become a campaigner for medical cannabis.  Most of the 62 forest fire victims died in their cars.  Ana Alvarez has turned her Lima flat into a cannabis laboratory - and prescribes weed extracts for conditions from cancer to multiple sclerosis.  Campaigners in the UK have also used cannabis extracts to treat ill children - sometimes with miraculous results.  Alvarez’s son Anthony, 17, suffered from a rare form of epilepsy, and was taking 17 pharmaceutical drugs - but still had up to eight fits per day.  Mothers are treating sick children with cannabis oil - and it works.

"After three days of taking marijuana oil, Anthony started to reconnect with life, he began to socialise, he began to sleep, he began to eat, and little by little he started to recover.  The change after three days was something extraordinary and from that moment my fight began."


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