Epilepsy is a very serious mental condition nowadays. It affects many older people but is also a threat to younger kids that exposes them to a high risk of debilitating involuntary convulsive seizures and even death. With the direct objective of trying to curb these seizures and a more general objective of better understanding the disease and the mechanisms and substances that affect it, a team of researchers at the NYU Langone Comprehensive Epilepsy Center led by Dr. Orrin Devinsky started looking into a specific component of the Marijuana plant suspecting that it might prove beneficial.
- Their suspicions were correct, partly anyway as the team found a direct correlation between the ingestion of cannabidiol, which is a substance found in the marijuana plant, and a remarkable reduction in the number of seizures and convulsive episodes. The study was made under the best possible conditions and standards so as to report accurate and reliable results.
- The subjects were 120 children aged 2 to 18 years old that were all suffering from a form of epilepsy called Dravet Syndrome. In this children-specific variant of the disease, the child experiences several types of seizures, developmental impairments, and speech and language deficiencies.
- During the course of the study, the patients were scheduled to receive an oral dose of either cannabidiol or a placebo for 14 weeks straight. The results came in afterwards and showed that the group that was treated with cannabidiol experienced a sharp drop in the number of seizures from an average of 12,4 seizures per month to only 5,9, a decrease that was not noticed in the placebo group.
Considering the fact that most currently available epilepsy medication is reportedly quite ineffective with sufferers of this specific kind of epilepsy, a.k.a Dravet, who usually continue suffering from multiple monthly seizures until they die before the age of 20 on average, this study could prove to be the best news of the century for these kids who might finally be able to live a normal life again.