Published May 05, 2011
A father from Montana claims his 3-year-old son, who was battling brain cancer, is alive today partly due to marijuana oil, which he gave him during the boy's nine-month stay in a Salt Lake City hospital.
Mike Hyde said he fed his son Cash the oil through his gastrostomy tube (or G-tube) — without doctors' knowledge — to ease his pain while the toddler was going through chemotherapy treatments.
“After his first round of high-dose chemo in August 2010, he no longer ate anything, and this went on through September,” Hyde told FoxNews.com. “He was getting worse and worse.”
This harrowing ordeal started for the Hyde family in May of last year when radiologists at Community Medical Center in Missoula, Mont., discovered a stage 4 brain tumor when Cash was just 20-months-old. Shortly after, the toddler was transported to Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah, where he was placed in the intensive care unit.
Cash, or Cashy as his dad likes to call him, was eventually diagnosed with a primitive neuroectodermal tumor (PNET), which is a malignant tumor of the central nervous system that spreads easily, and is usually found in infants, children and young adults.
“The oncologist recommended that Cashy receive three cycles of chemotherapy followed by three cycles of high-dose chemotherapy with stem cell rescue,” Hyde said.
Cash underwent the therapy, but the results were heartbreaking for his mom and dad, and it was at this point that they decided to step in.
“By the end of September he was so sick,” Hyde said. “He was no longer was able to take feedings into his G-tube. His stomach lining was burnt from the chemo therapy, it was no longer processing anything – it was fried. I asked doctors if there was anything else we can give him and they said ‘We’re giving him max amounts of all anti-nausea medications we can give him.’ They basically told me that this was as good as it was going to get. I told them that it was unacceptable.”
At this point, Hyde decided to pull Cash off the anti-nausea drug cocktail due to numerous side effects, and at the same time, he decided to start administering .3 milligrams of marijuana oil through his son’s G-tube.
“I put him on the oil and he started eating again, his quality of life completely changed, and we were told it was a miracle… that it was just amazing. He was sitting up and laughing again,” he said.
But Cash took a turn for the worse after his sixth round of chemotherapy. He went into septic shock, he had a stroke and suffered pulmonary hemorrhaging all at the same time.
“Doctors told us he was not going to make it,” Hyde recalled. “He was on life support for 40 days and was in a medically-induced coma. They said he would have brain damage and his lungs would fail. But I knew the medicine (marijuana oil) was in his body, and that helped him heal. It helped to rebuild his stomach lining, his liver and his lungs. He walked out of the ICU in mid-December. The nurses and doctors called him a ‘Christmas miracle.’”
Cash, now 3, was finally released from the hospital at the end of January and his prognosis looks excellent. Two weeks ago, he went for a check-up, and doctors didn’t even recognize him.
“They were amazed,” Hyde said. “The brain scans were amazing, his tumor is gone and his liver and kidneys are 100 percent healed. He should be on dialysis, but he’s running around.”
And while Hyde acknowledges that chemo killed the cancer, he said it almost killed his son in the process.
“It brought him to the edge of life, and if I wouldn’t have stepped in when I did, he wouldn’t be here right now. The marijuana oil was the best pain drug available for Cashy, as well as a neuro-protectant, antioxidant and antibacterial. I know it saves Cash’s life.”
Medical marijuana is legal in some U.S. states, including Montana, but is illegal to possess it without authorization from a medical professional. Hyde was able to get the oil for his son through a medical marijuana card that was issued by the state of Montana in Cash’s name.
Marijuana has been widely used to treat cancer patients suffering from chemotherapy-inducing nausea and vomiting.