MINNESOTA: Patrick McClellan’s first batch of medical marijuana, via vaporizer, worked like a charm, curbing the pain and muscle spasms that come with his muscular dystrophy and supplanting a combination of prescription medications that doctors say could kill him.
But the first and second rounds of cannabis oil missed the mark for treating 18-year-old Scott Rapp’s seizures. With the high costs and the hoops the Rapp family had to jump through just to get signed up, mother Shelly Rapp said they’re considering a move back to California, where the medicine was cheaper and worked better.
The story of Minnesota’s first month of medical marijuana is one of triumphs, disappointments and everything in between — a trial-and-error process that manufacturers expected and many patients hoped to avoid. For some in both camps, it’s breaking the bank.
Officials from the two companies cultivating and selling the cannabis pills and oils said they cautioned patients from the start: It’s a matter of finding the right dosage and strain to nail down an effective treatment. The state hopes to build off that learning curve by tracking patient results, filling a void of research for which cannabis-based medications work best for different ailments.