By: Juan Sebastián Chaves Gil
Cannabidiol (CBD) has been shown to be effective in treating Dravet and Lennox-Gastaut syndromes, two severe forms of epilepsy that are difficult to control with conventional medications. Studies have revealed that 100% pure CBD reduced seizures in half of Dravet syndrome patients, and in 5% of cases, seizures stopped completely. Similar results were obtained in Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.
Furthermore, the effects of CBD on migraine patients, mostly women nearing menopause, were explored. Although some studies suggest an improvement in migraines after menopause, others indicate that they worsen. Therefore, it cannot be stated with certainty whether menopause positively influenced the results of women with migraines.
Social Studies on Epilepsy and Cannabis:
Epilepsy affects 70 million people worldwide, and approximately 30% of patients do not respond adequately to conventional medication, known as refractory epilepsy. CBD, a compound derived from cannabis, has shown to be a promising alternative for controlling seizures in these patients, in addition to having other benefits for the treatment of chronic pain, tremors, headache, and other neurological disorders.
Although marijuana contains various compounds, THC is the one that causes psychotropic effects, while CBD is antiepileptic and lacks psychological effects. In preclinical studies, CBD has demonstrated anticonvulsant properties in a high percentage of cases in various animal species.
Regarding side effects, the most common ones in the use of medicinal cannabis oil were nausea and drowsiness, although nausea decreased in more patients than it increased, which could be considered a therapeutic effect rather than a side effect.
CBD has proven to be effective in the treatment of refractory epilepsy and could represent a significant pharmacological breakthrough in improving the quality of life for affected patients, mostly children.