norml11 - Page 52
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Unlike Valium, which only masked his symptoms and caused him to feel drunk end
out of control, marijuana brought his spasmodic condition under control without
impairing his facultieso Whenhe was smoking marijuana regul.arly he was more
active, alert and outgoing.
35_ Mar_juan_ controlled hisspasms so w,e_l thatBranstetter could go
outwith friends and he began to play billiards again. The longer he smoked
marijuana the more he was able to use his arms and hands. Marijuana also
improved his bladder control and bowel movements.
36. At times the _1]egal marijuana Branstetter was smoking became very
expensive and sometimes was unavai]able_ During periods when he did not have
marijuana his spasms would return, preventing Branstetter from living a "normal"
life. He would begin fie shake uncontrellably, his body would feel tense, and
his muscles would spasm.
37. In _979 Branstetter was arrested and (:onvicted of possession of
marijuana. He was placed on probation for two years. During that petted he
continued smoking marijuana and truthfully reportd this, and the reason for it,
to his probation officer whenever asked about its No action was taken against
Branstetter by the court or probation authorities because of his continuing use
of marijuana, except once #n the wake of his publicly testifying about _t before
the Missouri legislature. Then, although adverse acl;_on was threatened by the
judge, nothing was actually done.
38. I_ 1981 8ranstetter and a friend, a paraplegic, participated in a
research study testing the therapeutic effects of synthetic THC on spasticityo
Placed on the THC Branstetter found that it did help control his spasms but
appeared to became less effective with repeated use. A_so,_unlike marijuana, "
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