As part of National Pain Week, Cannatrek patient and former chair of Accenture ANZ Bob Easton has shared his personal health story to highlight the benefits of medicinal cannabis.
Easton was suffering from a combination of chronic health problems that caused acute inflammation across his body when he was introduced to the treatment in January 2022.
The 63-year-old Sydney businessman said he had exhausted all conventional treatments in an effort to relieve the intense pain brought on by psoriatic arthritis, small-fibre sensory neuropathy, and osteoarthritis.
He was also managing pain from shoulder and knee replacements, and multiple back surgeries and described his quality of life as a “one or two out of 10”, with his mental health also “deteriorating rapidly”.
He said: “My pain was really intense. I was taking Panedene Forte, Lyrica, anti-inflammatory drugs and other heavy pain killers. I wasn’t sleeping, I was struggling to walk even short distances… My whole body was inflamed.
“I’d never tried any drugs beyond those prescribed before, but I had heard good things about medicinal cannabis so, when the doctor suggested it, I thought why not give it a go.”
Easton was prescribed cannabis oil and said he felt a difference straight away.
“It had a huge positive impact, particularly with my inflammation, overall pain in my body and on my mental health. Initially, my neuropathic pain was still there, but we’ve since changed the dose and now almost all my pain has gone and my quality of life is eight out of 10.”
Data from the TGA’s Medicinal Cannabis Access Data Dashboard shows chronic pain is consistently the most common condition for which medical cannabis is prescribed to patients.
Easton added: “I know there’s a stigma around people who take medicinal cannabis, but I was open-minded.
“I have always been a believer in natural health and holistic medicine. I was desperate for pain relief and medicinal cannabis has worked for me so I say to others, ‘why not give it a go?’ It’s had such a positive effect on my well being in a short timeframe.”
Easton also attributed his recovery to an anti-inflammatory diet and auto-immune drug support.
“My pain and inflammation and blood pressure are back to normal and I’ve lost 14kgs in weight. I’m also a lot calmer now – the cannabis oil has relieved my anxiety, and I am happier and healthier for taking it,” he said.
Cannatrek founder and CEO Tommy Huppert said 80% of the firm’s patients are being prescribed medicinal cannabis for pain management.