Teens and children suffering from epileptic seizures showed signs of improvement when given treatment with pharmaceutical cannabidiol (CBD). They had much better control of their symptoms in comparison to those who were getting treatment with artisanal CBD.
This was highlighted in a primary study to be presented at the 72nd annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology that will be held in Toronto in April-May 2020.
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CBD is a cannabis compound that is known to relieve anxiety and stress. It also possesses anti-seizure properties.
It does not result in a ‘high’ unlike other cannabis components such as Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Pharmaceutical CBD used in treating epilepsy doesn’t have THC.
It has been approved by the FDA for treating two severe forms of epilepsy: Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome and Dravet Syndrome. Artisanal CBD has varying amounts of THC and CBD.
The use of cannabis for treating various medical conditions has only increased in recent years. Artisanal CBD has for long been available for years despite not being legal.
The author of the study, Nathan T Cohen, M.D. has shared valuable information on the kinds of CBD in his work.
The researchers studied the medical reports of 31 teens and children for the study. The average age of the patients considered in the study is 10. All patients had some form of epilepsy.
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Of 31, 22 of them were on pharmaceutical CBD and nine were relying on artisanal CBD. The researchers made a note of the dose of medication, seizure history, levels of CBD in blood, side effects and also the reduction recorded.
Patients who took artisanal CBD had 31 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL) of CBD in their blood. Those on pharmaceutical CBD had 124 ng/mL.
Teens and children on artisanal CBD had a 70 percent increase in their seizures. Those on pharmaceutical CBD experienced a 39 percent reduction in their seizures. Side effects were observed in 11 participants taking pharmaceutical CBD.
The side effects noted include diarrhea, nausea, low appetite, and sleepiness. Those experiencing side effects stopped using CBD during the study.
Cohen shared, “The difference in seizure control is dramatic and is definitely of concern since many people continue to use artisanal CBD”. He also stressed that the limitation of their study was the size of the group which was small.
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He said further research would be required to see if similar results can be produced in larger groups.
Another limitation is that the study did not include participants who have been actively taking artisanal or pharmaceutical CBD over time. None of the participants of the study taking artisanal CBD experienced any such effects.