In a statement supporting Oxford University’s new initiative to explore the benefits of cannabis-based medicine, Sir Patrick Stewart revealed he uses marijuana every day to successfully fend off arthritis.

“Two years ago, in Los Angeles, I was examined by a doctor and given a note which gave me legal permission to purchase, from a registered outlet, cannabis-based products, which I was advised might help the ortho-arthritis in both my hands.

“I purchased an ointment, spray and edibles. The ointment, while providing some relief from the discomfort, was too greasy to use during daytime and so I only use it at night. It helps with sleep as the pain was reduced. The spray, however, is much more usable and I spray my fingers and particularly my thumb joints several times a day.”

Stewart explained that he can now make fists, something he couldn’t do prior to the treatment. He continued: “The spray very quickly evaporates and leaves my hands quite dry, though with a slight burning or tingling sensation, which is not unpleasant. I believe that the ointment and spray have significantly reduced the stiffness and pain in my hands.”

After describing the absence of negative side effects, unlike the liver-affecting Advil and Aleve he took previously, Stewart concluded with an optimistic note about Oxford’s program: “This is an important step forward for Britain in a field of research that has for too long been held back by prejudice, fear and ignorance. I believe this programme of research might result in benefits for people like myself as well as millions of others.”