Research Brief – Cannabinoid Therapy In Epilepsy

Billakota S, Devinsky O, Marsh E. Cannabinoid therapy in epilepsy. Current Opinion in Neurology. 2019;32(2):220-226. doi:10.1097/wco.0000000000000660

The Study

This review study was conducted to take a look at the role of cannabidiol (CBD) in the treatment of epilepsy. 

Cannabidiol (CBD) is the type of cannabinoid therapy used to treat certain types of rare and severe pediatric onset epilepsy.

Study Findings

Phase III randomized controlled trials have shown that Epidiolex is safe and effective when used as a prescription medication for pediatric onset severe epilepsies. Epidiolex (cannabidiol) is an antiepileptic drug available in an oral solution Epidiolex is for the treatment of specific types of seizures in Lennox-Gastaut syndrome or Dravet syndrome; it can be given to those aged two and older. Epidiolex contains over 99% CBD and less than 0.10% Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). It is the first medication of its kind to be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).


Research that discovered the endocannabinoid system (ECS) and how cannabinoids such as CBD and THC work, Epidiolex is the first medically approved CBD treatment deemed safe and effective for the treatment of epilepsy; although this represents an important milestone, the use of cannabis derived products, such as CBD, to treat other medical conditions, including other forms of epilepsy, is yet to be determined.
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