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FEATURE Text Oliver X Photos courtesy of Teal Stetson-Lee, Jeramie Lu and Chris Holloman

Pro Mountain Biker Teal Stetson-Lee Part 2 Wikipedia lists over the counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs like Advil and ibuprofen) as a class of non-prescription drugs that “reduce pain, decrease fever, and, in higher doses, decrease inflammation. Side effects include an increased risk of stomach ulcers and heart attacks.” Since inflammation, as a result of injury, muscle and ligament strain, is enemy number 1 in competitive athletics, the impact that NSAIDs have on the health of the renal system is reason for alarm for athletes. A New York Times article back in 2002 cited the concerns that NBA players expressed about NSAIDs and kidney damage: “Since Alonzo Mourning, the Miami Heat's All-Star center, was found to have a kidney disorder more than a year ago – the same disease that caused the San Antonio swingman Sean Elliott to undergo a kidney transplant and eventually forced him to retire – many players in the National Basketball Association have grown acutely concerned about the use of anti-inflammatory drugs. “Medical experts say that use of the medication does not cause the kidney disease, which is called focal segmental sclerosis. But many doctors say that prolonged use at excessive levels of anti-inflammatory drugs, from over-the-counter medicine like ibuprofen and aspirin to prescription drugs like Vioxx and Indocin, may lead to other kinds of kidney problems. “Shaquille O'Neal, worried that his use of the antiinflammatory drug Naprosyn over the years could lead to the disease Mourning has, refused to take the drug for most of last season.

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“Rick Fox, O'Neal's teammate on the Los Angeles Lakers, launched an awareness campaign on his website to alert players to the potential risk of taking anti-inflammatory medication; Fox asked whether players were essentially risking the health of their kidneys to compete for championship rings.” Searching for alternative analgesics has become something akin to a holy grail quest for pain management in professional sports. But what if there was a substance that had been used medicinally for thousands of years for pain reduction and relief, right under our noses? In a 2009 article titled “The Analgesic Potential of Cannabinoids” published in the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, the medicinal properties of cannabis were touted: “Cannabis was used as a medicine in ancient China (2700 BC) and India (1000 BC). It was brought to Europe by Scythian invaders from Central Asia, entered Western medicine in early and middle 19th century and was widely used for its medicinal properties. Cannabis extract and medications were marketed by pharmaceutical companies over-the-counter in the United States in late 19th to early 20th century. The accompanying increase in recreational marijuana smoking led to formation of the Marijuana Tax Act in 1937. Eventually, cannabis was omitted from the National Formulary and Pharmacopoeia. In the 1960s, the recreational use of cannabis peaked, followed by a renewal of scientific interest in the plant for its medicinal properties. Since then cannabinoids have been studied or used in a multitude of applications, many of which relate to their potential use as analgesic agents.”

Profile for Reno Tahoe Tonight

December 2017 digital rtt  

December 2017 RTT featuring FEAST and Reno Riverwalk fine dining destinations; pro mountain biker and cannabis advocate Teal Stetson-Lee, ca...

December 2017 digital rtt  

December 2017 RTT featuring FEAST and Reno Riverwalk fine dining destinations; pro mountain biker and cannabis advocate Teal Stetson-Lee, ca...

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