Baltimore Ravens tackle Eugene Monroe is fighting to get marijuana removed from a list of substances banned by the NFL. (Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post)

Regarding the June 6 Sports article “Medical marijuana and the NFL”:

My hat is off to Baltimore Ravens tackle Eugene Monroe for bringing medical marijuana to the forefront in dealing with chronic pain. Although my football career ended in high school, an undiagnosed cervical injury started me down the road toward degenerative disc disease in my later life. Eight back surgeries have left me in chronic pain.

After a decade of treatment with opioids, they have become less and less effective, and the anti-inflammatories prescribed were a contributing factor in my developing kidney failure.

Medical marijuana is legal in Maryland, but the state has lagged in developing a distribution system that would provide relief to many who suffer from chronic pain. A number of doctors with expertise in treating chronic pain with cannabinoids work with patients to relieve their suffering.

My own experience with cannabidiol, a nonpsychotropic component of cannabis, has resulted in a significant decrease in the need for opioids and a better quality of life.

Robert Pickrell, Chevy Chase