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cbd gummies and epilepsy

The British Paediatric Neurology Association (BPNA) has drawn up interim guidance around epilepsy on behalf of NHS England.

Interim guidance from the ABN states that there is only published evidence for the use of medicial cannabis in Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. Prescriptions should only be for cannabidiol.

Guidance around prescribing cannabis-based products

The BPNA guidance states that non-licensed medicinal cannabis should only be considered for children who:

Dosing data for adults is currently very limited, although more information is expected shortly.

There is also a wide range of other cannabis products available on the internet and in some commercial outlets such as health food outlets and from cannabis ‘dispensaries’ internationally. These products are of unknown quality and contain CBD and THC in varying quantities and proportions.

This study showed that the addition of CBD to a traditional seizure medication decreased the frequency of drop seizures significantly in children and adults with LGS.

A summary of the Epidiolex clinical trials is found below:

The use of cannabis to treat epilepsy and other neurological conditions has been studied for a number of years. It has been hotly debated too.

Results from Gold Standard Studies of Epidiolex (CBD)

The Journal of Child Neurology hosted a special report podcast about cannabis on March 6, 2017. In the report, Dr. Alison Christy interviews Dr. Jackie Gofshteyn, a resident in pediatric neurology at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, about her article, “Cannabidiol as a Potential Treatment for Febrile Infection-Related Epilepsy Syndrome (FIRES) in the Acute and Chronic Phases.” Dr. Christy also speaks with epilepsy.com’s medical cannabis editor, Dr. Anup Patel of Nationwide Children’s Hospital, about his article, “Medical Marijuana in Pediatric Neurological Disorders.” Margo Roemeling, a third year medical student at Oregon Health and Sciences University, shares the learning topic on the history and use of marijuana in the treatment of pediatric neurologic conditions.

The Epilepsy Foundation urges anyone exploring any treatment for their epilepsy, as permitted under their state law, to work with their treating physician to make the best decisions for their own care.

Hemp is a variety of Cannabis Sativa L. plant historically grown for fibrous materials found in its stalks and seeds. It has been used to make items such as clothing fiber, upholstery, and other household items.

Despite this change in the classification of hemp and hemp-derived CBD, the only CBD product that has been rigorously studied and approved to be used as a medical therapy for epilepsy is the drug Epidiolex. While more CBD products may come to market in the coming months, it is important to understand that not every CBD product is the same quality or uniform from batch to batch. Any drug or supplement that is being considered for use as a medical treatment should first be discussed with your doctor. The potential for benefit as well as the interaction with other seizure medications and possible side effects require careful review with your doctor.

The interaction between CBD and other epileptic medications is unknown and may be responsible for the elevated liver enzymes seen in some studies of Epidiolex [1] (FDA’s approved CBD drug for epilepsy). However, such adverse effects were not severe and precautions were issued with recommendations to monitor the liver enzymes and concurrent medication levels while using CBD. Otherwise, CBD is generally considered safe, non-psychoactive, with few side-effects.

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CBD for Epilepsy

The research to date points to using CBD as the preferred cannabinoid in the treatment for epilepsy. The addition of THC may increase the risk of seizures and may invoke side-effects not seen with pure CBD. The best CBD oils for epilepsy are the isolates and the broad-spectrum oils, which contain no THC and are the closest in structure to Epidiolex, keeping in mind that more study is needed and this area is still controversial.

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