extakTALKS Interview: Dr. Benjamin Caplan
In this special episode of extrakTALKS, Dr. Jon sits down with Dr. Benjamin Caplan to discuss a number of health related topics in the hemp and cannabis industry. Dr. Benjamin Caplan of CED Clinic has served as Chief Medical Officer of Canna Care Docs overseeing more than 250,000 patients. He has a tremendous amount of experience helping patients with their illnesses including sleep, anxiety and pain issues with hemp and cannabis products. Dr. Caplan started his studies at Tufts University, and completed his residency at Boston University. He is the founder of CED Foundations and the CED Clinic. He is now a certified doctor of Family Medicine in the medical cannabis industry.
During their conversation, Dr. Jon and Dr. Caplan discussed topics ranging from personalized cannabis product care for patients, bio availability of each ingestion method, the seemingly controversial topic of pediatric cannabis care, the cannabis health industry during the coronavirus pandemic and much, much more. Listen in for the expert opinion from Dr. Jon and Dr. Caplan in the ever expanding world of the cannabis health industry, the research conducted (and yet to be conducted), and the increasing relevance of cannabinoid therapy amongst a broken medical system in the world of western medicine.
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[01:09] Welcome Dr. Caplan
[02:45] “I Want Help Falling Asleep”
[05:24] Have you had a patient, after getting prescribed, come back and say it was too much?
[06:53] Can you explain your app?
[09:02] How has telemedicine affected your business?
[12:15] Do you have on site compounding?
[14:06] Do you add beta caryophyllene or myrcene to you formulations?
[15:27] When would you recommend a cbd vapor over a hemp lotion?
[18:26] How do lotions penetrate the skin to reach the muscle?
[19:32] Do you have any issues or any thoughts on taking a lot of like edibles versus a vapor?
[21:35] What do you do with adverse events?
[24:11] How have you interacted with industrial pharmaceutical FDA complex
[26:24] What has been your approach to the pediatric side of this?
[30:34] What would you say to people who want to have clinicals on every indication?
[34:01] Where can people find out more information about you?
Dr. Jon 00:00
Okay, welcome to this special edition of extrakTALKS. I’m Dr. Jon Thompson and today I’m going to be interviewing Dr. Caplan, Dr. Benjamin Caplan of a CED clinic. He is a very remarkable person. He has basically served as Chief Medical Officer of Canna Care Docs overseeing over 250,000 patients. So he has a tremendous amount of experience helping patients with their illnesses with their sleep with their pain. He has a very impressive background. He started at Tufts University, and he completed his residency at Boston University. And he’s the founder of CED Foundations and, and also CED Clinic. He is currently a certified doctor of Family Medicine, and he’s a Board Certified so this is the guy we’re talking to. We’re very excited to have him and let’s get into this interview Welcome Dr. Caplan to our show, extrakTALKS. So very happy to have you here. I was just reading your your bio and it says in there that you have really interacted with over 250,000 patients dealing with interacting with, you know, dealing with cannabis and and also hemp I suppose and just tell me a little bit about that. That’s very impressive amount of people.
Dr. Caplan 01:36
Sure I Well, I mean, I I think very few people understand exactly what is required for the physicians as we as we kind of trained and learn a trade. You know, most clinicians coming out of residency you’re seeing folks 24 hours a day or these days, a little bit less than that, but for four straight years and then even beyond that, so the life of a physician is quite busy. I am fortunate to be someone who thinks out of the box and I jumped into cannabis on the early side. And I saw a clear need for education and for clarification, and to correct, you know, global misunderstandings, but but certainly in my neck of the woods. And I was in a position early on, I’m supervising a lot of clinicians, other other doctors seeing patients and I got to review with them the cases and sort of dive in not just the literature, but to what patients were actually telling us. Um, you know, sometimes literature tells one story, but it’s not a complete picture. But then seeing patients who are going through pain are dealing with unbearable stress or, you know, can’t sleep at night and any number of other you know, conditions is a very different matter.
Dr. Jon 02:45
Yeah, I downloaded that one of the pieces of information that you have on your website, and it says “I want help falling asleep.” I thought that was such a great summary of you know, how you would use a cannabis product. What you would use it for what the dosages are, I mean, it’s all really there. And I’d like to interact with you on that on that particular document a little bit because there’s just so much great information. So many people have problems you know, for example going to sleep and what has been your experiences with you know, a lot of people are using like CBD to go to sleep. And we know that that’s a from the FDA and from the drugs that are on the market right now that we know that that’s a side effect actually of CBD. And I was noticing that you’re kind of recommending more of a one to one approach for THC and CBD or kind of a mixed balanced approach. What is your thoughts on that? And how, how do you really rationalize, you know, what really works and what’s been your experience?
Dr. Caplan 03:48
So it’s, it’s a huge treasure chest of information, I think. You know, I generally put up information on the website, which is sort of applicable to many, many people. And that’s the not really the recipe for success with with any medicine. I’ll fully admit that and certainly not with cannabis. I think actually cannabis medicine and regular medicine must be personalized, it must be individualized. One person to the next, you know, the pharmaceutical industry and the sort of medical industrial complex, would have us believe that one size fits all, because you know, that’s easier to manufacture and commercialize. It’s not really the best medicine. And one of the awesome things about cannabinoid medicine, whether it’s CBD or THC or other terpenes is really taking a look at what we don’t know, which is, which is right now a lot of it. And that’s very humbling to clinicians and makes us sort of think more carefully about the person in front of us, you know, is this person, someone who wants to be euphoric or not at all? Is this someone who wants relief falling asleep? Or is it staying asleep? Or is it both? And these kinds of nuances are not amenable to just take this pill and Call me later, that that sort of attitude from clinicians is just doesn’t belong in cannabis. That’s one of the things that drew me to it. I really love a puzzle and I love learning about someone, a patient in front of me and learning about what makes them different what tools would help them in a way that’s different from anybody else. That’s the sort of Sherlock Holmes of medicine, which is, which is so fun.
Dr. Jon 05:24
Right. No, I mean, it’s kind of interesting. You know, a lot of people have been playing with these ratios, and you know, formulating them and then what’s really awesome about your, your knowledge basically, is you then you’re able to go out there and understand, you know, okay, here’s what’s actually happening clinically with a patient and so has there been a time when, for example, you would prescribe like a one to one and then they come back to you and say, hey, look, this is too much for me or whatever. And all the time, okay.
Dr. Caplan 05:55
All the time. Yes. I mean, total consult. There’s nothing there’s nothing magical About about me, and there’s nothing magical about the literature which is guiding me, right? It’s just helps me understand, you know, if I’m a hiker, I, if I go hiking enough, I start to understand what happens if my right foot falls, or if there’s gravel in the ground, I know how to navigate those things better than if I wasn’t hiking all the time. And the same is true of cannabis. You know, I’m interacting with people taking thousands of different medicines. And I and I’m gracious to have patients who teach me about their experience. You know, I’m also I guess, bold to be in the business world. And I’m working with people in other fields, which, which helped me learn through their eyes. You know, for example, I have an app company that is serving people to teach to teach the app about where they’re coming from and what they’re learning about cannabis. And I’m in the, in the, in the weeds, so to speak, learning about what people are, are finding helpful. So I’m constantly learning.
Dr. Jon 06:53
Well, that that app, let’s talk about that app a little bit because it really is we’re kind of where the rubber meets the road and In the past, you would have someone fill out a sheet or you may occasionally like every two weeks, you’d have them keep a journal or something along those lines, right? That Is that how you would do it. And now, now it’s more like, Hey, I have this, I’m gonna, I’m gonna give real time feedback, and that’s recorded, and then you can chart it. So how is that helping?
Dr. Caplan 07:23
It’s actually – you’re right, except it’s not just the digitization of a journal. What we’re doing actually is, is taking a physician’s understanding and taking the experience of being a clinician understanding these many people and putting it into the app so that someone can basically have a clinicians perspective on cannabis in the app. It’s not just, “oh, here’s what I did and how I felt no, no, Jane and Joe and Joshua were here also felt that so that must mean this is a feature of that particular medicine.” It’s not just that it is that at a basic level. But beyond that, it’s it’s guiding state change So if I’m someone who has trouble sleeping, and I want, I want something which is not going to make me groggy in the morning, I want something which might be a little euphoric at night, but isn’t gonna make me feel anything weird in the next day, that can be computed, you know, by a clinician, and then we’re trying to translate that into machine learning and artificial intelligence inside the app to give people that on the go a companion app.
Dr. Jon 08:24
So that Okay, so you’re basically taking kind of the big data approach to multiple people or multiple thousands of people actually, who are putting the information into the app, and then you’re applying AI or machine learning to that to really get to the point where you can then what’s the output on that? What what’s the output?
Dr. Caplan 08:44
Dr. Jon 08:45
Dr. Caplan 08:46
Dr. Jon 08:47
The output would be what dosage or timing
Dr. Caplan 08:49
So the output will be a specific product and the dosage of that product, okay, and what to do after that or what to do before that it’s not actually just cannabis. We’re also guiding things About metabolism, things about the environment. You know, if you’re listening to angry music and you consume cannabis, guess what happens? You feel kind of angry. If you’re feeling nervous, guess what the cannabis also brings some of that out. So we’re trying to guide people not just with the plant, but also the environment around it.
Dr. Jon 09:02
Right? That totally makes sense. So, that’s, that’s really awesome. Hey, um, how is this? How is your telemedicine aspect of this really affected your business? I mean, it’s, I noticed that, you know, a lot of the clinics that are out there right now are doing telemedicine. Do you really kind of like scratching my head? Do you really need to see the patient? Or what’s your thoughts on that? And how has it affected you?
Dr. Caplan 09:42
It’s a great question. So I’m fortunate to live in Massachusetts and the regulatory system in Massachusetts is one of the best in the world. It’s, it’s really well thought out. It’s really well designed to be incredibly safe and patient centered as well as business centered for really both sides. In particular, I was allowed to submit a waiver to let me see patients through telemedicine very early on in the pandemic, because they wisely understood that patients consume cannabis, you know, with great success helping a wide range of medical conditions that are quite severe. Right? So being allowed to do it, you know, not every state can say that. So, you know, I’m fortunate in that respect. As far as the business goes, it’s been overwhelmingly popular. People want to stay safe, they understand that going to dispensaries going to clinicians, offices, puts them at risk. And this is not a time for any of us to assume more risk. And we all have to keep safe and just, you know, wait till we as a scientific body can can move through this. So it’s been it’s been incredibly popular. For me, it’s it’s wonderful. I get to see many, many more people. There are times where it’s quite busy. You know, I’m actually up here on vacation and I’m still working because I want to make sure everybody gets seen when they need to be seen. But you know, times I’m seeing 50-60 people a day, That’s a very busy day for me. But it’s incredibly rewarding. I get to learn as sort of amplified from more and more people. So it’s thrilling for me.
Dr. Jon 11:11
Right? That’s great. So you do that primarily through like, web based, like Zoom or something along those lines?
Dr. Caplan 11:18
Yeah, I mean, my take, I’m trying to help design cannabis medicine to be patient centered, I don’t want it to be a paternalistic system, like we’re used to where the doctor tells you what you have tells you what you need, come back to me if you need anything else, I want it to be about what is it this patient wants, right and how can I help them on their terms? So I’m doing Zoom calls with some people that prefer video. We learn a lot face to face I think I’m also you know, also doing telephone calls for people that prefer that sort of quick and easy. Um, you know, the the meat of learning from a patient is really what where they’re coming from what their medical history is what the history of their present concerns are. What kind of other medicines they’re taking, and how the cannabis is going. And those are all things which are amenable to surveys. So all of my patients come and teach me about who they are and what they’re going through through surveys. And we follow them over the years.
Dr. Jon 12:15
Cool. Hey, I want to get back to this personalized medicine thing, because that’s really the crux of this of the whole. I mean, at least your approach, and I think it’s a really good one. You have like on site or compounding or how do you guys typically change up? Or how do you do this? This is really great. This is really cool.
Dr. Caplan 12:37
I if I had ADD, it would make a lot of sense. I actually am very focused, but on 100 different things at the same time. So my clinic is one passion of mine. And I take that not just the United States, we’re actually moving abroad to try to expand the clinic. I have an app as I mentioned, and we’re focused on that. I also have a formulation team and we’re taking what we’re learning from the dispensary is consumption from patients and what they’re teaching us. We’re taking some knowledge from the literature itself and we’re adapting that into understanding what formulations are missing from the market. Right now right now we live in a world that is focused on THC to make people as high as they can be. So they’ll spend money and that’s really you know, the industry globally is hungry for money. You know, they’ve spent a lot trying to get their stores open and you know, have legal sales wherever they are, and that’s put ownership and a lot of debt. So they’re trying to make up a lot of money by selling a lot of THC. The same is largely true of CBD, you know, it’s it’s been allowed because it’s, it’s not, you know, it’s not scary and making people feel good, because, you know, Lord knows, our government systems have had trouble with that in all kinds of ways. So CBD is legal and everybody’s trying to sort of be very excited about what they’re allowed to do right but in the focus of THC and CBD. We are missing the entire rest of this. Whole pharmacy that’s built into this natural plant, right. And that’s really my focus. That’s my passion.
Dr. Jon 14:06
So I noticed like on the sleep sheet that I downloaded from your website and it, it specifies beta caryophyllene as one of the one of the key or myrcene as one of the key aspects to and I know, there’s lots of research there for specifically for sleep. So you have formulations where you add a little bit more of that in there, or are you just take whole plant or what what’s your approach?
Dr. Caplan 14:31
I do, I do. I mean, I would love to share with the audience all of our deep dark secrets, but unfortunately, I can’t. The truth is that we live in a very oversimplified commercial culture. Now, right now, if we are shopping for cannabis products or CBD products, we might see Oh, there’s a product that’s advertises for sleep. And there’s one that’s for focus, and there’s one for joy. The truth is that they don’t really know what they’re selling what they’re putting into those products. Yeah, they might have have an idea. There are a couple studies that push them one way, they don’t really have a full picture yet. And some of them might work. I’m not saying that they don’t work, but it’s not really good science. We’re not there yet. My team is putting together formulations and we’re not stopping there. We’re not really interested in selling them. That’s not our goal. We’re applying them to people, we’re suggesting that they try different combinations, and we’re learning from that so that we can teach the rest of the market. Yeah, my interest is purely academic.
Dr. Jon 15:27
Okay. So very, very good. I mean, you have recommendations for different, you know, ways to take the formulations, vapor, edible, tincture, lotions. Let’s kind of talk a little bit about that. I mean, certainly, if you’re taking a vapor it’s much faster acting I guess. When would you recommend a vapor over say a lotion? For example? What would you think about that?
Dr. Caplan 15:53
It’s a good question. Yeah, your lungs seemed like two big objects in your chest. But when we look closer These airbags touch or virtually touch a tennis court size array of micro blood vessels. That’s the transmission of oxygen and co2 into the bloodstream. This is a it’s a massive surface area. When you inhale something, whether it’s oxygen or laughing gas or cannabinoid vapor that gets distributed almost immediately into your bloodstream through this, this channel I’m discussing, that instant gratification is something that someone would like if they want results now. They are having trouble sleeping, they want something that’s just gonna knock them out and make them feel sleepy right now. That’s different than something which doesn’t work right away, but it might last a lot longer. You know, so I’m describing actually edibles. There are people who have trouble and many people actually who have trouble sleeping because they are too stressed out. They’re in bed lying awake thinking about all the things they forgot to do during the day or the things that have to do the next day, and they are sort of tense and tight and it’s a lot of muscular tension causing their difficulty sleeping right as well as the anxiety. lotions have a incredible ability to relax tense muscles. We’ve we’ve known about this from the Multiple Sclerosis literature these patients with multiple sclerosis often have, you know, terrible cramping in some of their extremity muscles. Just as an example there are many other conditions which have tense muscles, but there’s a lot of cannabis literature that highlights their relief with cannabinoids and that’s an example of taking the current medical literature and expanding that we would you know, invite people to experiment with lotions on tense muscles or tense shoulder muscles or thigh muscles or or what have you. We even have patients with jaw pain temporomandibular joint pain TMJ pain and they put the lotion on their joints to feel more relaxed there and it eases pain. Similarly, actually,
Dr. Jon 18:08
yeah, it’s a local, it’s a local. Okay.
Dr. Caplan 18:10
Yeah, it’s a local relaxing agent. Yes. And the same is true for sleep, you know, if you were hunkering down after after a vigorous day, you might get a massage. And that helps your muscles relax, it helps you feel less tense, and you’re probably quite easy to go to sleep. Same thing with the cannabinoid lotions.
Dr. Jon 18:26
What do you think? I mean, some of the lotions, how do you know they get in into the muscle? You know what I mean? I always I always kind of wondered that. You know, like some of them are just a regular lotion doesn’t really penetrate the skin to the point where it’s in your muscle, or are there some formulations that are better than others? What’s your thoughts on that?
Dr. Caplan 18:44
It’s a great question. And the reason we might think it wouldn’t work. If people know about cannabis and cannabinoids is they’re oily molecules. And when you pour oil into your arm, it’s not going to bury into your muscle. It’s not going to do anything there. Lotion actually is a emulsification of oil meaning they sort of push water products and oil products together with a medium like a wax. And then we think of wax and oh it kind of does stay on and but I don’t know if it goes deep it seems to moisturize maybe dry skin on top of it doesn’t really go deep. The truth is cannabinoids do penetrate to a small degree. But it’s really the terpenes that are the money. And that’s what’s taking the cannabinoids and penetrating them more deeply.
Dr. Jon 19:32
Well, they’re kind of like solvents, right? I mean, they do tend to go through them. I remember DMSO for example, is one of those ones where you can stick your finger in it and taste it, you know, a couple minutes later, so that’s kind of interesting. They’re so cool. Cool, okay, and then edibles are taking much longer. Obviously they’re metabolized differently. Do you have any issues or any thoughts on you know, like taking a lot of like edibles versus a vapor. It seems like vapor would almost be safer because you’re really not running them through your your liver. And you know a lot of the products that you buy now are, you know, in fats and things like that there’s a high fat content to them. What are your thoughts on that?
Dr. Caplan 20:14
So there are a couple concepts you raised there that are really interesting and important. Anything which comes into your bloodstream ultimately gets filtered, and that’s it’s all going through your liver eventually. The fact that it happens a little bit more directly from your GI tract is relevant because things which are filtered through your GI tract feel different. They’re they’re sort of tagged as it were, with chemical tags which make it stay around a little bit longer or make it flush more quickly down down the toilet. So the effects of how your rydalmere body metabolizes these things is different whether you’re breathing it or consuming it by mouth. metabolism is also governed by many other things. Our level of exercise if you’re someone who wakes up in the Morning and does not exercise, the same amount of cannabis is going to affect you differently than someone who is exercising vigorously in the morning. Unfortunately, the complexity does not stop there. If you are hydrated, if you’re not hydrated, if you have a fatty meal, if you have a non fatty meal, if you have a sugary meal, all of these things and you think about the kinds of edibles that you would have, generally they want to sell them. So they’re chock full of sugar. Or they want the chocolate to taste good. And it’s chock full of butter, right? So all of these things, actually, even alongside the cannabis have an impact in how the cannabis feels.
Dr. Jon 21:35
Make sense. Makes sense. Hey, I wanted to go quickly back to your app again, because I think I think it’s so cool. And something came up in my mind. What What do you do with adverse events and how, how are you recording those and in your clinical practice? How are you dealing with those and what kinds of things have you seen?
Dr. Caplan 21:58
It’s a good question. So You know, the people who hated cannabis and demonized cannabis spent years and at the time, probably hundreds of dollars because it was in the 30s and through 60s, but they spent a lot of their time demonizing cannabis, it was all bad. And I think the mistake that modern life modern clinicians modern science should not make is to have an argument which is cannabis is all good. It is not. There are people who have unpleasant reactions. The good thing about cannabis is that the unpleasant reactions we see are not long lasting, and they’re not killing anybody. So the most important things are boxes that are checked off. That being said, there are bad effects. There are adverse effects things we don’t want necessarily when we take cannabis. Those range from upset stomachs, to diarrhea to dry eyes, which are incredibly itchy and uncomfortable. Dry throats. Everybody kind of jokes about cotton mouth meaning you’re you feel like you have a mouthful of cotton And part of that is because cannabinoids interact with your mucus secreting membranes. If you’re if your eyes are not tearing as readily, you’re going to feel dry eyes you might have rubbing between your eyeball and your eyelid. And that might cause red eyes. If you don’t have secretions in your mouth, pouring saliva into your mouth, you might feel like you’re having a dry mouth. Um, so there are things which are not not rocket science, we understand where they come from. And we have to know about them, we have to learn about them from patients. That’s really what it comes from. So to your question, how do we deal with that in the app, we are learning the app is really about learning. It’s about one person teaching us. And actually, we are giving that right back to the next person who’s consuming who’s using the app. And we’re sort of creating an app as a central train station for people to teach one another about their cannabis use. So we take an open minded approach to learn what people are finding, we give them opportunity to teach us, you know, was this All good? What were the things you didn’t like? What were the things you did like, and then you know what? With that information, we’re going to make a change. The machine will make a change. And we’re going to give you another recommendation. And then you tell us how that goes. And we’re fine tuning this process among thousands of people. So we create something which works best for everybody.
Dr. Jon 24:11
So you had mentioned the industrial pharmaceutical FDA complex at the very beginning, wondering how have you interacted with anybody in, you know, kind of in that sphere? And what are they? What are their reactions to what you’re doing?
Dr. Caplan 24:26
Of course, I mean, you know, and I hope I’m not mistaking myself, I don’t think they’re the bad guys. We need pharmaceuticals. We need a medicine industry to reach people in hospitals. Right now. The system is archaic. It needs to change, but it is not changed yet, and it won’t change for a while. there’s a there’s a delay in evolution of medicine, which is healthy for all of us. We won’t we don’t want medicine to change one day from the next very quickly. So that being said, I do engage with the pharmaceutical industries. To some degree. I know a lot of the owners. I know a lot of The researchers and I work with them on a better understanding of what they can produce. Part of the problem that they face. And that we all should be aware of, is that pharmaceutical products must be the same thing. If you’re in the hospital and you’re taking a pill, we know darn sure that that pill is the same pill that you got last time and the same pill that Joe, Jane and Josh are all getting. To solve the same problem we have to have that consistency.That consistency depends on a minimum number of ingredients. Pills, medicines, which are FDA approved, have usually one ingredient sometimes to boy, oh boy, very rarely more than that. So take that reality that pills have to have few ingredients. And then you turn to a natural pharmaceutical plant, which has many thousands of these. And we face a problem, right? We can’t get this medicine, this plant medicine into a pill that’s very hard when when The two are studied against one another. The plant always wins. This is something about nature, about our complexity, the complexity of being human, which is a better match than pharmaceuticals. I think this is fantastic. I think this is sort of commanding humility In science in pharmaceuticals that we cannot do it better than nature. Right. That’s one of the beautiful things about what we’re doing here.
Dr. Jon 26:24
Yeah, I think I agree with you. So last question. I hear you have kids in the background. That’s, that’s cool. You have four kids?
Dr. Caplan 26:32
I do yeah. four kids, two girls, two boys. I’m blessed.
Dr. Jon 26:35
We have same thing to two girls, two boys. So it’s cool. Cool. Hey, so what is your thoughts on you know, giving cannabis to a pediatric patient or a pediatric I mean, a lot of people would shy away from that. However, we know that you know, there’s a tremendous amount of benefits that can come to those if for specific indications. So what has been your approach to the pediatric side of this?
Dr. Caplan 27:03
It’s a great question. It’s it’s a rich discussion. I’m a family doctor. So I’m I’m trained and fascinated by the pediatric population, the adult population and the geriatric population as well as obstetrics and gynecology. Everything that’s common for human suffering is really my passion and that includes cannabis and pediatrics. First of all, it’s important to understand that pediatric cannabis when we’re talking about children and cannabis, we’re not talking about kids. hoodlums fooling around. Right now we’re talking about children who are very sick. They’ve tried other medicines, they’ve tried other therapies and they’re failing, left, right and center. When they have no other options. We can move to something which is more experimental. Is it work? The truth is cannabis is not that experimental. It’s been around for millennia, as long as probably humans have been around. And we know as we discussed before, it’s it’s mostly non toxic. But we don’t understand well enough how it interacts with children’s brains as they’re growing and lasting over time. There are actually three major Hallmark studies that have looked at mothers while they’re pregnant consuming cannabis and breastfeeding. What you know what, while they’re breastfeeding, consuming cannabis, and we’ve watched the children over time. And we don’t see terrible things, we see some small differences in behavior. We see some questionable differences in learning, but nothing that’s really meaningful. You know, you and I don’t know of Oh, that’s the kid whose mother had cannabis. We don’t know that because it really hard to find. There are countries whose use of cannabis is in meshed in their culture. And we don’t see anything that’s problematic about them, just as many geniuses come out of there and successful everything come out of those countries is everywhere else. You know, so to some extent, we need to be cautious because it is new and we must care most about our children. But on the other hand, we can be optimistic. And and one one important lesson I think that’s important to think about with children is life is hard for everybody, no matter what, no matter what you’re doing, no matter who you are, no matter how rich or poor or where you live, life has difficulties. If there is a substance, which can make those difficulties a little bit easier than a child who engages in that extra substance, that crutch as it were, might lose the skills to engage with life, which is difficult. You know, it’s important for us as we go through difficult times, to be able to cry it out, to be able to ask for help to be able to compensate to cope with difficult times. If someone is taking a medicine, whether it’s cannabis or an anxiety medicine or depression medicine, if they take a medicine it makes everything okay, they forget how to engage in these skills. This is a long way of saying the difficulties that I’ve seen with children consuming cannabis or adolescents consuming cannabis are indistinguishable from the children who have lost those skills. I don’t think there’s anything which is terribly damaging in a long lasting way for for these very, very sick children relative to the other other medicines and therapies they would be taking anyway.
Dr. Jon 30:34
Right, Right. Makes sense. It does make sense. What would you say to the the group that would say, Well, look, you have to break out every indication and do clinicals on every indication what and go through the process. Okay. That’s kind of that complex that we were talking about before. And especially when it comes to kids, what do you think about I mean, We’re kind of saying “hey, look, we I don’t know if we have time to wait for that process” or what do you think Do we have to have? Do we have to have incontrovertible clinical evidence for every remedy that we that we put out? I guess I don’t know.
Dr. Caplan 31:15
It’s a delicious question. I’m the Internet has made us think that there is an answer for everything that we have now magic on our phones that we can learn everything as instantly as it seems imaginary. The truth is medicine has always been partly a science, partly an art. There are no right answers. You know, we’re discussing individuality because there are no broad brushes which paint everybody the same way. That complexity is so important. And so it’s so important for us to remember, especially with with with children, we can’t we can’t paint everybody with a brush. Brush, we have to take individual circumstances, you know, accountable?
Dr. Jon 32:07
Well, I think that that definitely answers the question and kind of just sheds a light on on, you know, really the future of medicine really, and probably the future of your clinic and your work. I mean, it’s just heading more towards that. Well, already being in the vanguard of personalization number one, and second of all, you know, just continuing to get the data so that we can learn from what we’re doing.
Dr. Caplan 32:34
Right, and what a brilliant antidote to the broken medical system we have now, right, where people feel like the doctor doesn’t have time for them. The doctor is looking at a computer, there’s someone who is bean counting how much this will cost and that will cost and it’s what about me as a person what about getting to know me and helping me right, um, that that is gone now
Dr. Jon 32:54
yeah, so if it was truly, you know, just a pure equation. And we wouldn’t need doctors at all. It would just be, you know, here, the input A, input B, input C, okay pops out in output D. And there you go. I mean, there it is. So we don’t need doctors for that. That’s an equation right? So it’s not that that’s your point, right? So
Dr. Caplan 33:15
Exactly. It’s the opposite of that It’s starting off with a, you know, what’s the complexity here? Even mathematically, we cannot understand the interaction of all of these cannabinoids and terpenes and flavonoids in this plant. We do not have the quantum computing yet right to be able to understand that. But that doesn’t mean we’re penniless – We’re empty. We can come with the best knowledge we can we can we can learn from studies as we’re normally learning from them. We can learn from anecdotes and patient experiences, you know, we know how to do and we put those together with the best state of the art science. And that’s what I’m trying to do with it with the companion app.
Dr. Jon 33:54
Makes sense. Well, it’s it’s been very good to talk to you. I appreciate your time.
Dr. Caplan 34:00
Dr. Jon 34:01
I wish you the best of luck and now’s. So can you give us a little bit more information about how people can get in touch with you, and how they would interact with your materials and things like that?
Dr. Caplan 34:12
Of course, yeah. So so the clinic website is not really a marketing engine. It’s I’m trying to make it an education sort of tool for people. There are handouts that are there. There are links to archives of literature. I’ve tried to curate every piece of cannabis literature that comes out into a place where everybody can, can can read for free. You know, I’m trying to give back to people that things I think they would want to read. I’m also doing webinars now if people have interest. You know, a couple weeks ago, we talked about how cannabis interacts with Coronavirus. Just recently we talked about cannabis and sleep actually. We’re going to do cannabis and anxiety and stress and pain. And we actually have a grow series coming where we’re going to invite a bunch of masters growers to teach people about the nuances and the art of growing cannabis. So we’re trying to pour resources out there on social media. I have a Twitter account at Dr. Caplan, Dr. Caplan, which is all about translating a research trial into non jargon language so everybody can understand and talk about it in common terms.
Dr. Jon 35:21
Dr. Caplan 35:23
And then of course, there’s always direct access for people that want more personalized attention. We specialize in that.
Dr. Jon 35:29
Okay. Well, it’s been good talking to you. And thank you for your time.
Dr. Caplan 35:35
Thank you so much.
Dr. Jon 35:36
We’ll just take it from there. So thanks a lot.
Dr. Caplan 35:37
Appreciate it. My pleasure. Hey, take care.
Dr. Jon 35:40
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