Toddler suffering from seizures hoping to find relief in medica - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Toddler suffering from seizures hoping to find relief in medical marijuana

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A Cedar Falls family exhausted and out of options for their four year old, Garrett.
Garrett suffers from seizures nearly every day.
The Deckers are asking Iowa lawmakers to approve the proposed expansion of Iowa's Medical Marijuana Law, to allow for the availability of cannabis oil in our state.

They see it as a chance for their son to have a more normal life.

 Iowa's  2014 Medical Marijuana Law allows patients with epilepsy, untreatable with prescription drugs, to use cannabis oil, but makes it nearly impossible to get it legally, without leaving Iowa.
 The Iowa Legislature is currently discussing a bill that would allow for limited amounts of marijuana to be grown for medical use in the state under highly regulated rules.

  For Mike and Brienna Decker, they've never really gotten to know the true Garrett, since just 16 months he has been on two or more medications for frequent seizures that have stunted his development leaving him unable to speak; unable to communicate his pain.

"Just nothing. I mean, his eyes were completely glazed over and then they just kind of drifted to one side," recalls Brienna.
 It was Garrett's first seizure.
 "By the time we actually got him help and they got it stopped which took two adult doses of sedation for a little 16 month old baby, he had spent 44 minutes in a status seizure," said Brienna.

 Three and a half years later and countless medications and other treatments all with dangerous side effects. . ."all things that you would only sign on to this if the alternative was death. But with seizures, really the alternative is death. You let your brain seize long enough and don't do anything about it, you are just letting your brain fry itself," said Brienna.

  Nothing has been able to stop the seizures.
  "He is turning blue. . . 22 times in 3 days to watch that happen to your kid is not a small number. We are just at the point where we have done everything else," said Brienna.

The Deckers last hope is cannabis oil which has allowed many epilepsy patients to experience a seizure free life.
"Experience seizure freedom for their kids. Why shouldn't we be able to try it?" said Mike.

 "When they have gone some where else and gotten to meet their kid for the first time, you just think, it shouldn't be that we have to leave to do that," said Brienna. "We are seriously considering leaving the state . . . We are born and bred Iowa. This is home and this is where everyone else is, so the thought of having to leave to get Garrett the quality of life that he deserves."

 The Deckers believe medical marijuana, regulated correctly by the state, will allow Garrett and many others with various illnesses, a new chance at life; one they currently can't get in Iowa.

In a change in his position this week, Gov. Branstad expressed at least a willingness to work on the bill, which would let Iowans with chronic epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, or terminal cancer get cannabis oils, pills or patches produced in Iowa.  But, the bill's outcome remains very much in doubt right now in the Iowa Legislature.

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