Marijuana as Epilepsy Treatment? Two New Studies Agree That It's the Best Cure for Hard-to-Treat Cases

Photo Credit: Latinos Health

Photo Credit: Latinos Health

Not one, but two new studies have been released attesting to the claims that medical marijuana is an excellent treatment option for treatment resistant cases of epilepsy. In the larger study, which we discussed in a recent post (see: Landmark Study Confirms Marijuana Extract Is Amazing Aid to Prevent Seizures in Children With Epilepsy), 261 patients who completed the trial received cannabidiol (CBD), a natural derivative and cannabinoid of marijuana, for three weeks. The trial resulted in a decrease of grand mal or tonic-clonic seizures by about 50 percent, and about one of every ten patients actually became seizure free.

The other study took place over the course of 12 months and involved 25 children with epilepsy who averaged around 9 years old. The children received Epidiolex, and by the end of the trial about 40 percent of the patients experienced a decrease in seizures by about 50 percent. One of these children had a particularly severe form of epilepsy called Dravet syndrome, a form of epilepsy that generally does not improve with other treatments, and by the end of this trial the child was seizure free. That being said, in contrast with these promising results, 48 percent of the participants stopped taking Epidiolex due to lack of improvements, and one child stopped its use due to worsened seizures.

In both studies, the patients knew exactly what they were receiving, meaning the studies were not placebo-controlled or double-blinded. The results of the studies should be taken "with a grain of salt," and a larger, randomized, and placebo-controlled study is currently in the works. This information has been brought to you by Latinos Health and approved by our Chief Medical Officer.