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Patrick Stewart reveals daily medicinal marijuana use to treat arthritis

The actor issues support for UK’s first initiative exploring benefits of cannabis-based medicines

Jack Shepherd
Thursday 16 March 2017 11:03 GMT

Due to the release of Logan, Sir Patrick Stewart has undertaken an extensive promotional tour, talking about everything from superheroes to circumcision.

The 76-year-old actor has issued a statement supporting the UK’s first initiative exploring the benefits of cannabis-based medicines, led by Oxford University.

Stewart revealed how he has used medical marijuana on a daily basis for two years to help with severe arthritis.

“Two years ago, in Los Angeles, I was examined by a doctor and given a note which gave me legal permission to purchase, from a registered outlet, cannabis-based products, which I was advised might help the ortho-arthritis in both my hands,” the statement reads.

“This, it would seem, is a genetically-based condition. My mother had badly distorted and painful hands. I purchased an ointment, spray and edibles.

Hollywood sign changed to ‘Hollyweed' to promote cannabis legalisation

“The ointment, while providing some relief from the discomfort, was too greasy to use during daytime and so I only use it at night. It helps with sleep as the pain was reduced.”

Stewart explained how using a medicinal spray is remarkably easy as can be applied throughout the day, helping alleviate pain.

“The spray very quickly evaporates and leaves my hands quite dry, though with a slight burning or tingling sensation, which is not unpleasant.

“I believe that the ointment and spray have significantly reduced the stiffness and pain in my hands. I can make fists, which was not the case before I began this treatment.”

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Speaking about side effects, Stewart said there have been none while the alternatives - taking NSAID's, Advil, Aleve and Naproxen - are know to cause issues, particular on the liver.

He continued: “This is an important step forward for Britain in a field of research that has for too long been held back by prejudice, fear and ignorance. I believe this programme of research might result in benefits for people like myself as well as millions of others.”

In North America, 28 states have legalised the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes; eight of those - Colorado, California, Oregon, Washington, Maine, Nevada, Alaska and Massachusetts - have legalised marijuana for recreational use.

Recently, Attorney General Jeff Sessions claimed legal cannabis causes violent crime, despite a lack of evidence for his claim.

Meanwhile, Stewart has spoken candidly about perhaps not returning to the X-Men franchise in The Independent’s film podcast. Logan is in cinemas now.

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