Kerri Parker, a former Playboy model, has chosen to treat her brain cancer with cannabis oil instead of chemotherapy.
In 2013, Parker underwent surgery to treat two types of brain tumors. While those surgeries appeared to be effective at the time, Parker was recently notified that a tumor had once again been detected in her brain. Since then, Parker has been using cannabis concentrates in hopes of treating her cancer.
Cannabis as a form of cancer treatment remains highly controversial. Research has found that cannabis can be an effective treatment for the symptoms of chemotherapy and radiation, like nausea or a lack of appetite. And even the National Institute on Drug Abuse recognizes that recent studies performed on animals have shown that cannabis might be able to help kill, or reduce the size of, certain cancer cells.
There are also a number of anecdotal cases in which cancer patients have used certain forms of cannabis in place of traditional treatments like chemotherapy or radiation and found success. One of the most famous cases is the story of Rick Simpson, an engineer and former cancer patient who developed a cannabis concentrate that he believes cured his cancer. Since then, thousands of patients around the globe report to have used his regimen successfully to treat their own cancer.
While these stories may sound convincing, scientists are still far from having conclusive evidence that cannabis can actually cure cancer. Last year, one study even found that refusing chemotherapy and taking alternative treatments instead leads to a greater risk of death.
Still, patients like Parker are deciding they would rather take their chances with cannabis than suffer through the severe side effects and bodily damage inflicted by chemotherapy and radiation.
“I don’t want my hair to fall out from chemo, or my face burned from radiotherapy,” Parker told The Mirror. “Cannabis has helped many others with cancer. I’m willing to put faith in it too.”
Since cannabis, for the most part, remains illegal in the United Kingdom, Parker is concerned that her use of the substance could result in serious criminal charges. She has spent the past six months using cannabis oil that she’s imported from Spain.
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