Cannabis derived medicine reducing seizures in children with difficult to manage epilepsy

Published May 8, 2019 11:36 a.m. ET
AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

Imagine having a child that is prone to seizures that are so bad, that they can lead to intellectual disabilities. This is the nightmare that so many parents across the globe endure every single day, as they struggle to reduce their child's symptoms to a rate that allows for a good quality of life. A child with epilepsy may experience prolonged and dangerous seizures that can cause injury both externally and internally. We have long known about the anti-spasticity qualities of cannabidiol, but for the first time, even its effective was measured in a clinical trial that used CBD, with absolutely no chances of inducing an unwanted high in the patients. The results were stunning and released only four days ago, providing new hope for thousands of families around the world.  

Cannabis research on the treatment of epilepsy using cannabidiol

The study which was released on April 30, 2019, by the American Academy of Neurology looked at 200 children with an average age of nine years old. The children were divided into three different dosing groups for comparison, with one receiving a placebo, another getting 20mg and the third was given 10 mg of cannabidiol. The youth’s seizure activity was recorded for one full month prior to treatment for a doctor evaluated assessment of condition to achieve the most accuracy. All the kids who were provided with CBD saw stellar changes in the frequency of their seizures, while the placebo group showed no unexpected difference.

The results

CBD was administered to patients via syringe orally and monitored for any changes in their behaviors and symptoms. The two active groups showed quite promising results that varied from one another, and each had different rates of side effects being report.

Placebo - Those who were given a placebo instead of the cannabis derived medicine saw a 27% decrease in both the frequency and strength of their seizures.

Low 10mg cannabidiol dose - The children who were provided a 10mg daily regimen of cannabidiol noticed a 56% overall reduction in their seizures frequency and length.

High 20mg cannabidiol dose - A 47% decrease in seizure strength and frequency was noted in the higher dosed group.

Side effects

All the children in the study reported side effects from the sudden influx of cannabidiol, including those who were provided with the placebo instead. The most commonly reported symptoms were a decrease in appetite, diarrhea, fatigue, fever, and sleepiness.

Placebo - 88% of children who were given no cannabidiol at all reported adverse effects.

Low 10mg of cannabidiol - 89% of the children in the low dose group reported feeling negative side effects.

High 20mg of cannabidiol - 90% of the children in the high dose group reported adverse side effects.

Who wanted to continue treatment?

All the patients who were able to take part in this study that received a dose of cannabidiol chose to continue long term with the treatment. Only 7% of the placebo group asked to stop citing the adverse side effects as their number one reason why.

Recommendation

The most exciting part of this type of cannabis research is awaiting the release of the doctor prescribed recommendations for anyone who is actively trying to treat epilepsy themselves. According to these incredibly cannabis researchers, 10mg of CBD per day is enough for managing most epilepsy conditions in children, and any more significant doses should be carefully considered on a case by case basis.

In conclusion

With marijuana legalization rapidly spreading across the globe, we should see many more cannabis research trials that are just as exciting as this one! In the meantime, parents with children who have been diagnosed with epilepsy now have new hope in an alternative method of treatment was never offered as an option before. There is nothing more satisfying than a release of cannabis related information that solidifies what so many people have believed all along. Marijuana is a medicine, and an incredibly effective all natural one that can be beneficial to almost anyone in some form or another.  

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