Teen Vogue: How Marijuana Helps Cancer Patients


“It’s helped me so much, and it can help so many people.”

Before she was diagnosed cancer at age 16, Alicia Bennett was a self-described “good little choir kid” who “never smoked, never drank, and never did anything terrible.” She weathered chemotherapy, surgery, and then a reoccurrence her senior year of high school. Thinking she was cured, she left home in New Hampshire and followed her sister south to Texas A&M University, where her rare, stubborn sarcoma tumor starting growing back. Again.

After starting yet another round of treatment, Alicia found herself at a party where she caved and smoked pot for the first time.

“Why not?” Alicia recalls thinking. “I have cancer. I don’t care anymore. I’m getting chemo.”

Little did she know marijuana would go from a despondent whim to a lifesaver and then to her life’s ambition. Alicia just turned 23, and is recovering from a complete amputation of her right arm, shoulder, breast, and five ribs. It took a team of five surgeons 18 hours to remove her tumor, which was the size of a small watermelon. Multiple drug trials had failed to shrink the mass, and so she and her medical team at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center at The University of Texas reluctantly agreed that amputation was her best option.

Full Article / Source: www.teenvogue.com/story/how-marijuana-helps-cancer-patients