Ex-Bear Jim McMahon: Medical marijuana got me off narcotic pain pills
Former Super Bowl champ and Chicago Bears quarterback Jim McMahon says medical marijuana helped him recover from the pain of his 15-year football career and multiple concussions. While football fans focused on SF and the preparations for Super Bowl 50 McMahon was in Chicago.He attended Tuesday’s Bears reunion marking the 30th anniversary of their Super Bowl victory and was featured in an ESPN “30 for 30” screening of a documentary about the team, which includes a focus on his health struggles.
McMahon who is new 56 has been plagued by debilitating health problems following his multiple concussions in the National Football League. He has been diagnosed with early onset dementia and has severe headaches, depression, memory loss, and vision and speech problems. He also said he suffered a broken neck. As a result, he joined a pending class-action lawsuit accusing the NFL of negligence and misconduct in handling concussions.
According to the Chicago Tribune however, since going public with his health issues, McMahon said he has recently been feeling significantly better after chiropractic neck treatments to relieve the pressure. But the key to getting off the prescription narcotic painkillers he took throughout his career, he said, was medical marijuana.
McMahon lives in Arizona and has a medical marijuana recommendation. Before using marijuana the was taking 100 Percocet pills a month for pain in his shoulders, neck and arms. From the Tribune:
“They were doing more harm than good,” he told the tribune. “This medical marijuana has been a godsend. It relieves me of the pain — or thinking about it, anyway.”
On a typical day, McMahon will smoke marijuana in the morning to help him get up, a little in the afternoon depending on how he feels, and before bed, saying he couldn’t sleep without it.
He prefers the indica strain for its higher content of THC, the part of the plant that gets users high. But he says he maintains a clear head without the “fuzziness” he got from pain pills.
The former “punky QB” said he initially tried to get into the medical marijuana business, but it didn’t work out. Though his interview was arranged through a representative from Cresco Labs, which grows and sells medical marijuana in Illinois, McMahon said he has no financial ties to the industry, but went public to help other people who are suffering.
His comments come as Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner considers whether to approve eight more medical conditions to add to the list of about 40 that qualify for medical marijuana here. A state advisory board recommended adding the new conditions, including pain that doesn’t respond to conventional treatment.
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*Pics: Chicago Trib
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