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 The only favorable evidence that could be found by
 NO_ML and DEA consists of stories by imarijuana users who
 claim to have been helped by the drug° Scientists call
 these stories anecdotes_ They do not accept them as
 reliable proofs° The FDA's regulations, for example,
 provide that in deciding whether a new drug is a safe and
 effective medicines _isolated case reports...will not be
 consideredo '_ 21 CFR 314o126(e) o Why do scientists consider
 stories from patients and their doctors to be unreliable?
 First_ sick people are not objective scientific
 observers, especially when it comes to their own health. We
 all have heard of the placebo effect. Patients have a
 tendency to respond to drugs as they believe is expected of
 them. Imagine how magnified this plecebo effect can be when
 a suffering person experiments on himself, praying for some
 relief. Many stories no doubt are due to the placebo
 effect, not to any real medical effects of marijuana.
 Secondf most of the stories come from people who took
 marijuana at the same time they took prescription drugs for
 their symptoms. For example, Robert Randall claims
 marijuana has saved his sight, yet he has taken standard
 glaucoma drugs continuously since 1972. There is no
 objective way to tell from these stories whether it is
 marijuana that is helpful_ or the proven_ traditional
 medicines. Even these users can never know for sure.

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