Medical marijuana miracle? It’s unlikely cannabis oil saved boy with 2 cancers

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[Editor’s note: David Gorski, a surgical oncologist at the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute responds to claims in a forthcoming book The Boy in 7 Billion by Callie Blackwell. In the book Blackwell claims that cannabis oil, which she started giving her son Deryn to relieve his symptoms during a bone marrow transplant for two cancers, actually saved his life when the bone marrow transplant appeared to be failing.]

cross onlyWhat probably happened is that Deryn Blackwell was a highly unusual case in which his last stem cell infusion took a far longer amount of time to engraft than the doctors at the hospital treating him had observed before. It just so happened that, as Deryn was deteriorating, his mother, anguished at watching him suffer and desperate to do anything possible to alleviate his suffering, decided to give vaporized cannabis oil a try to help his symptoms.

Deryn’s recovery was unexpected, but unexpected and rare recoveries do occur in medicine. Given what we know about cannabis oil, its rather modest effect on cancer, and the tendencies of cannabinoids to be, if anything, immunosuppressive, it strains credulity on a strictly scientific basis to attribute Deryn’s turnaround on homemade cannabis oil. That’s not to say it’s impossible that cannabis oil was responsible for Deryn’s recovery, only that it’s incredibly improbable.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: Did cannabis oil save Deryn Blackwell, the “boy in seven billion,” when his bone marrow transplant for two cancers was failing?

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