The story that really put CBD in the spotlight as an effective anti-epilectic drug (AED), was the story of Charlotte Figi. Charlotte was only three months old when she was diagnosed with Dravet Syndrome—a rare, catastrophic, lifelong form of epilepsy that begins in the first year of life with frequent and prolonged seizures. After several treatment methods failed, she was eventually treated with a CBD oil that reduced her seizure frequency from up to 300/week, down to two or three times per month—that’s about a 99% improvement! That CBD oil was eventually branded as Charlotte’s Web.
Although, despite the plethora of anecdotal evidence, and a handful of small randomized trials, there were no quality clinical trials which studied cannabis’ efficacy in treating epilepsy. However, evidence concerning the potential anti-seizure efficacy of cannabinoids reached a turning point in the last 18 months, with the completion of three high-quality placebo-controlled clinical trials, gauging the efficacy of a purified-liquid CBD product in treating patients with Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.
In a 2017 double-blind, placebo-controlled trial (the gold-standard of study design) performed on 120 Dravet syndrome patients, researches found that the median frequency of seizures in the CBD-treated group, was reduced from 12.4/month to 5.9/month; whereas, in the placebo group, the median frequency was largely unchanged (14.9 to 14.1);
the percentage of patients who had at least a 50% reduction in convulsive-seizure frequency was 43%; and that 5% of the CBD-treated patients became seizure-free vs 0% in the placebo group.
Additionally, researches from two high-quality, placebo-controlled clinical trials investigated CBD’s potential as a treatment option for Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS)—a severe, difficult to treat childhood form of epilepsy characterized by drop seizures—a type of seizure that consists of partial or complete loss of muscle tone, leading to dangerous falls and other accidents. In both studies, when compared to placebo, CBD treatment was associated with a median-percent reduction in drop seizures of between 37% to 44%.
Compared with THC, cannabidiol (CBD) shows a better defined anti-convulsant profile in animal and human models. However, there are animal studies showing that THC also has anti-seizure effects. Unfortunately, a high-quality, placebo-controlled clinical trial has yet to be published. Just as important, THC’s side effect profile precludes its use in most situations that require more than a very small dose.
So, in consideration of the relevant research, I do approve of that product — along with the other 18:1 formulations offered by Care By Design — as an anti-seizure medicine. In fact, their 18:1 formulations would be the first ones I would recommend.
I hope this helps!