CBD Studies Reviewed for Cohesion in Treatment for Children with Drug-Resistant Epilepsy

Researchers from Canadian universities and health clinics conducted a review of prior medical studies to determine if all research was leading to the same conclusion regarding CBD reducing seizure frequency in children with drug-resistant epilepsy. Research from MEDLINE, Embase, PsycINFO, Cochrane Library and gray literature was reviewed to locate randomized controlled trials (RCTs). The primary outcome for these studies was seizure freedom. Other positive outcomes were reduction in seizure frequency (total, ≥50% reduction), quality of life and sleep. The negative outcomes were status epilepticus, death, gastrointestinal adverse events and visits to the emergency room.

There were four RCTs highlighted in this study that involved treatment with CBD. The results from these four studies demonstrated that there was no statistically significant difference between CBD and the placebo in seizure freedom, quality of life, sleep disruption, or vomiting. There was, however, a statistically significant difference in reduction of medium frequency of monthly seizures, an increase in the number of participants with at least a 50% reduction in seizures and frequent diarrhea. Death and status epilepticus were infrequently reported.

By looking at these studies as a whole the researchers stated with moderate certainty that CBD reduces seizures among children with drug-resistant epilepsy. Patients are cautioned, however, that this study focuses only on CBD and should not be extended to all cannabis products.

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