Sierra Riddle, whose 3-year-old son Landon was diagnosed with leukemia, has chosen cannabis over the chemotherapy treatment given by doctors. She will have to deal with Child Protective Services, who will investigate the Colorado Springs mom’s choice as a type of abuse and neglect.
“Within three months, we could all see that chemo was killing Landon,” said Riddle. “He would vomit like 50 times a day. No pharmaceuticals would stop it.”
She discovered an alternative medicine, cannabis oil, which was better and more cost-effective. However, doctors are against Riddle’s decision and still suggest many more years of chemotherapy.
Back in August, Riddle said she would do whatever it took to make sure that Landon “gets to have that relief and have that quality of life he deserves.”
Within weeks of using medical marijuana, Riddle says she and her family have seen improvements in Landon’s health.
KRDO NewsChannel 13 tried to contact the Children’s Hospital Colorado for their point of view on medicinal marijuana and using it to treat cancer patients. In a statement, here’s what the hospital had to say in response:
Out of respect for patient privacy, Children’s Hospital Colorado cannot provide specific information. However, Children’s Colorado can provide the following information from Stephen Hunger, MD, Director, Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders, Children’s Hospital Colorado:
- Childhood cancer remains the leading cause of death by disease among children in the U.S.
- About 25 percent of childhood cancers are acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).
- The survival rate for children with ALL treated on Children’s Oncology Group ALL research trials is over 90 percent.
- This is attained with 2 to 3 years of chemotherapy.
- Children’s Hospital Colorado is one of the largest centers in the country that treats children with ALL.
- For more information visit www.childrenscolorado.org
Charlotte Figi, 6, suffered from debilitating seizures until she was recently introduced to cannabis oil, which has lead to a dramatic improvement in her cognitive functions and has lessened her seizures.
"I literally see Charlotte's brain making connections that haven't been made in years," said Matt Figi, Charlotte’s father, in an interview with CNN. "My thought now is, why were we the ones that had to go out and find this cure?”
Charlotte suffered her first seizure in 2006 when she was 3 months old and was eventually diagnosed with a severe form of epilepsy called Dravet Syndrome. Charlotte’s parents then discovered a boy with Dravet who had been helped by low-level THD medical marijuana, and pursued the treatment.
According to MSN, Charlotte was 5 when her parents discovered the treatment, which discouraged most doctors from prescribing it.
“Everyone said no, no, no, no, no, and I kept calling and calling," said Paige Figi, Charlotte’s mother.
Colorado physician Margeret Gedde finally agreed to research the case saying that after Charlotte’s many encounters with near death experiences, the risks of cannabis seemed insignificant.
Alan Shackleford, the second doctor to approve Charlotte’s treatment, initially had reservations about giving a medical marijuana license to the youngest applicant in Colorado, but admitted that the family had tried every other option.
Charlotte’s seizures now occur only once a day and usually in her sleep. She is able to eat, walk and ride her bicycle without help.
Another 41 patients have now been treated with the low-THC marijuana strand, which doctors call “Charlotte’s Web” after its first young patient.