Jared Robert Senseman, The (Jackson, Miss.) Clarion-Ledger
(Photo: Jared Robert Senseman, The (Jackson, Miss.) Clarion-Ledger)
OXFORD, Miss. — The only reason 73-year-old Elvy Musikka still has her sight, she says, is she’s been smoking pot for the last 30 years.
“In 1975, my doctor told me if I didn’t start using marijuana, I’d go blind,” said Musikka. “Shortly thereafter I found out that, indeed, it was the only thing that would help me with my glaucoma.”
Musikka is one of only four people still enrolled in the federal government’s Investigational New Drug program, which allows a small number of patients to use medical marijuana grown at the University of Mississippi. The program stopped accepting new participants in 1992 but allowed patients already in the program to continue receiving their prescriptions. At its peak, the program provided pot for 30 patients.
“All of us admitted in the program were required to prove to the FDA, DEA and NIDA that marijuana was the safest and most efficient treatment available for us,” she said. “The bottom line for me was that I was losing my sight.”