7-year-old gets medical marijuana to combat chemo

PORTLAND — A 7-year-old girl suffering from leukemia is one of Oregon's youngest medical marijuana patients.

Her mother says she gives her daughter marijuana pills to combat the effects of chemotherapy, but her father, who lives in North Dakota, worries about the effects of the drug on her brain development.

Mykayla Comstock was diagnosed with leukemia last spring. Her mother treats her with a gram of cannabis oil daily, The Oregonian reported (http:bit.ly/TcqSqW).

Mykayla's mother credits the drug for the leukemia's remission. "As a mother, I am going to try anything before she can potentially fall on the other side," said Erin Purchase, 25, who with her boyfriend administers Mykayla's cannabis.

The girl says the drug helps her eat and sleep but also makes her feel "funny."

"It helps me eat and sleep," Mykayla said. "The chemotherapy makes you feel like you want to stay up all night long."

Mykayla's father, who is divorced from the girl's mother, was so disturbed by his daughter's marijuana use that he contacted child welfare officials, police and her oncologist. The father, Jesse Comstock, said his concerns were prompted by a visit with Mykayla in August.

"She was stoned out of her mind," said Comstock, 26. "All she wanted to do was lay on the bed and play video games."

Comstock, who works in a North Dakota oil field, pays child support to Purchase and covers Mykayla's health insurance. He said he observed strange behavior during an August visit and took Mykayla to a private lab, where technicians detected THC levels of an adult daily marijuana user.

Gladstone police contacted the girl's mother, examined Mykayla's medical marijuana paperwork, then told Comstock there was little they could do.

Oregon law requires no monitoring of a child's medical marijuana use by a pediatrician.

The law instead invests authority in parents to decide the dosage, frequency and manner of a child's marijuana consumption.

— Information from: The Oregonian, http:www.oregonlive.com


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