Although still socially frowned upon in some places, a good percentage of the population has grown more lenient towards cannabis usage. Thanks to the overwhelming amount of publicly available research and the inevitable oversaturation of information, it’s become nearly impossible to deny that cbd—a cannabinoid that stems from cannabis itself—may not actually be as harmful as its psychoactive associate, Tetrahdryocannabinol (THC). Ergo, cannabis may not be as damaging as society was originally led to believe.
CBD in particular has proven itself to be an extremely unique cannabis compound. Many studies posit that it can provide a myriad of health benefits for the human body. Pain relief, nausea relief, anti-inflammation, and antipsychotic effects are just some examples listed. Quite recently, there’s also been a rise in reports regarding epileptic patients receiving CBD treatment for their condition. But can CBD really be taken as a cure to for epilepsy?
Charlotte & CBD
Perhaps the strongest case for cbd as an epilepsy cure is Charlotte Figi, a young girl who experienced her first seizure only three months after she was born. Diagnosed with SCN1A-confirmed Dravet syndrome, her parents spared no expense to find her a cure and give her a shot at a healthy life.
It was her mother who eventually decided to start Charlotte on “adjunctive therapy” using a medical marijuana strain that had higher concentrations of CBD rather than THC. After a few months, it became increasingly apparent that her seizures were dropping in frequency. From almost 50 episodes each day to just about two or three convulsions per month, her parents were overjoyed to find something that actually worked.
After 20 months, Charlotte was weaned off her antiepileptic drug, and the strain that helped her was dubbed Charlotte’s Web.
Porter & Jacobson: Percentages
Porter and Jacobson conducted arelated study in 2013. They approached the parents of epileptic children who were receiving CBD-enriched cannabis treatments for their condition. Their findings revealed that 84% of the parents reported positive results. Of the 84%, 11% of them happily reported that their child was completely seizure-free.
For those that were still experiencing seizures, 42% reported that there was a definite drop in the frequency of episodes by almost 80%. The other 32% reported only a moderate 25% to 60% decrease in episode frequency.
CBD As An Anticonvulsant
There are a good number of pre-clinical animal studies and case studies out there that strongly suggest CBD can lessen spasticity, improve consciousness, and drastically inhibit (or at least lessen) instances of seizures. All these indicate that CBD can, indeed, be used as an anticonvulsant or epilepsy treatment.
However, an article published on the Citizens Unite for Research in Epilepsy (CURE) website does point out that no one should draw any conclusions without further concrete scientific evidence. There have been instances of scientifically-controlled studies exploring the potential link between CBD and epilepsy treatment, but the results yield neither confirmation nor denial.
Still, CBD has been established as perfectly safe for consumption, with minimal side effects. Despite the lack of supporting scientific evidence, many people seem happy to take a chance on CBD,just as Charlotte’s parents did. And when you weigh the risks versus the rewards, it’s easy to see that the reward far outweighs the risk.