Seizures in Children and How CBD Therapy Might Help
Similar to other studies, this study explores the effects of CBD therapy in relation to seizures, but is focused on children with Dravet Syndrome.
Dravet Syndrome is a rare genetic epileptic neurological disorder that develops in the first year of a child’s life. It can cause developmental disabilities and is currently treated by finding the best mix of medications to manage the child’s seizures.
Unfortunately, traditional medications and treatments generally seek only to minimize the symptoms which is, unfortunately, typically a lost cause as the seizures from this condition are refractory.
Trial Parameters and Process
The parameters of this trial are particularly impressive and add to the integrity of the results:
Subject pool of 120 children and young adults with Dravet syndrome and drug-resistant seizures
Over the course of a 14-week treatment period, the subjects were randomly assigned either a daily dose of CBD oral solution based on body weight or a placebo. The doses were given in conjunction with each subject’s standard antiepileptic treatment.
While the rate of non-convulsive seizures did not change, the CBD-treated convulsive seizures decreased from 12.4 to 5.9 percentage points – almost half. The placebo group only decreased by 0.8. In addition, 5% of patients who were given CBD became seizure free, compared with none in the placebo group.
It’s important to note that the CBD group did experience more severe side-effects, including vomiting and fever. However, these side-effects should be put in context. An astonishing 62% of the CBD group reported an significant increase in their overall condition, compared with on 34% of the placebo group.
The results are certainly compelling. However, the adverse side-effects warrant a more comprehensive, long-term study to investigate the continued use of CBD for Dravet Syndrome sufferers.
Authors: Orrin Devinsky, M.D., J. Helen Cross, Ph.D., F.R.C.P.C.H., Linda Laux, M.D., Eric Marsh, M.D., Ian Miller, M.D., Rima Nabbout, M.D., Ingrid E. Scheffer, M.B., B.S., Ph.D., Elizabeth A. Thiele, M.D., Ph.D., and Stephen Wright, M.D.; Cannabidiol in Dravet Syndrome Study Group