The legalization for the usage of cannabis and its products is a contentious or controversial topic in many states and countries. While some and states have consented to its legalization, others are still debating on the issue. Some people question whether permitting its usage is the right choice. Well, many people presume that cannabis is often used to get people high. But, little do they know that there are medicinal benefits of cannabis. Hence, sanctioning its usage will be the right choice for the health benefits of many people.
Cannabis also referred to as cannabis constitutes of different components with the most popular being CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) – naturally found in the cannabis plant’s resin. The THC compound is psychoactive; thus it gives people a euphoric sensation while the CBD compound is non-psychoactive hence used for medical purposes. Medical cannabis has many benefits such as reducing acne, alleviating cancer-related symptoms, relieving pain, lessening seizure disorders, and reducing stress, anxiety, and depression. This article seeks to discuss further medical cannabis for epilepsy.
What is medical cannabis?
Before you get to know much about medical cannabis and epilepsy, you first need to understand what medical cannabis is. Medical cannabis is a plant-based remedy or medication from the cannabis indica or cannabis sativa species. As mentioned earlier, it is used for different purposes. For instance, pain, epilepsy, acne, cancer, anxiety, depression, stress, multiple sclerosis, nausea, and other conditions. Its health benefits incorporate relief from pain, anorexia, and muscle spasm. The medical benefits are seen in neuroplasticity, vascular health, immune function, digestive function, neuroprotection, and emotional and mood regulation.
What should I know about medical cannabis?
As aforementioned, medical cannabis is the medical usage of the cannabis indica or sativa plant to treat or relieve symptoms of diseases and conditions. However, according to many studies, it is difficult to find facts about medical cannabis as it has been used for many years globally until the early 20th century. Additionally, sturdy thoughts and opinions about its usage exist, both pros and cons. As you know, cannabis is made up of different compounds with the two commonly known being THC (psychoactive) and CBD (non-psychoactive). The CBD compound is presumed to be responsible for the various medical benefits.
The CBD compound contains an oil extract, Epidiolex, which is still under investigation for epilepsy. Medical cannabis products constitute a diverse range of both THC and CBD concentrations. According to experts, as a person who is new to medical cannabis, you ought to inhale or consume no more until you understand your response.
Also, CBD has distinctive properties which also make it ideal for medical purposes. They include; anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, anti-oxidant, antipsychotic, anticonvulsant, anti-emetic, and anxiolytic among others. Its neuroprotective properties hence show the relationship between cannabis and epilepsy. CBD oil can be used to treat epilepsy and other movement disorders due to its neuroprotective properties.
CBD and epilepsy: What researches exist?
Numerous laboratory and clinical studies have been conducted over several years to determine the relationship between cannabis and epilepsy. Also, anecdotal reports have been produced. Most of the research was being undertaken to identify whether CBD oil can be used for epilepsy. Most of this research suggests that medical marijuana has been and can be used to control epileptic seizures. However, conducting this research has not been easy. Not only have there been national regulations and limited access to CBD but also time and financial constraints which have made it difficult to do.
Conversely, in recent years, some studies have shown the medical benefit of a plant-based CBD product in treating a particular group of epileptic individuals who have not shown any response to traditional therapies.
What clinical trials have been done?
Numerous studies and trials are underway on the benefits of medical marijuana on epilepsy. Despite the federal regulations, restricted access to CBD, and time and financial constraints, some clinical trials have been conducted to show how CBD oil for epilepsy can be used.
As mentioned above, the CBD compound contains an oil extract, Epidiolex which is used to control seizures in epileptic individuals potentially. As researchers studied this medicine in their clinical trials, they experimented their research on a group of people. Some took placebo whereas the others took CBD at different doses. Below is a summary of the clinical trials that were conducted.
- According to these controlled and uncontrolled trials, people with LGS (Lennox-Gastaut) and Dravet syndromes, more than 650 people were treated with Epidiolex.
- Also, in expanded access and other compassionate use programs, more than 150 people were treated.
- All the study participants took seizure medications.
- Reducing the intake of the medicine in controlled trials due to any side effect was minimal as it majorly happened when people took a higher dose of Epidiolex.
- Changes in the liver function were the root cause in stopping the treatment with Epidiolex. For those who took a higher dosage, stopping the treatment came as a result of sedation, lethargy, and sleepiness.
Side effects of cannabis usage
When taking the CBD epilepsy dosage, you need to ensure you do so correctly. Taking a low dosage has side effects such as dry mouth and fatigue. Also, taking a high dosage can result in paranoia, dizziness, and psychoactive effects such as hallucinations and change in the mood. Additionally, according to the clinical trials conducted by the researchers, other side effects of taking a higher dose of the Epidiolex include decreased appetite, lack of energy, fatigue, insomnia, change in liver function, sleepiness, rashes, poor quality sleep, malaise, and diarrhea among others.
Furthermore, there are some serious risks which ought to be considered such as increased aggressiveness, panic attacks, suicide attempts, and depression among others. But, the FDA believes that such problems arise from taking epileptic drugs with medical cannabis. Regardless, the FDA works with product developers to offer people the best marijuana-based products. They want to guarantee that any therapies from cannabis and its components are not only safe and effective but also have a high and consistent-quality manufacture.
In conclusion, people should not presume that cannabis is often used to get people high. With its many constituents, cannabis can be used for both recreational and medical purposes. Some of the medical benefits of cannabis include relieving pain, controlling seizures, reducing acne, and relieving stress, anxiety, and depression. CBD, one of the major compounds contains an oil extract, Epidiolex, which is used to help control seizures. Hence, this shows the relationship between epilepsy and CBD. Research has and is being conducted to show how medical cannabis is used to control epilepsy.