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Marijuana epilepsy

Giulia S Porcari, Cary Fu, Emily D Doll, Emma G Carter, Robert P Carson
Medically refractory epilepsy continues to be a challenge worldwide, and despite an increasing number of medical therapies, approximately 1 in 3 patients continues to have seizures. Cannabidiol (CBD), one of many constituents of the Cannabis sativa or marijuana plant, has received renewed interest in the treatment of epilepsy. While highly purified CBD awaits Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval, artisanal formulations of CBD are readily available and are seeing increased use in our patient population...
February 8, 2018: Epilepsy & Behavior: E&B
Emilio Perucca
The interest in cannabis-based products for the treatment of refractory epilepsy has skyrocketed in recent years. Marijuana and other cannabis products with high content in Δ(9) - tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), utilized primarily for recreational purposes, are generally unsuitable for this indication, primarily because THC is associated with many undesired effects. Compared with THC, cannabidiol (CBD) shows a better defined anticonvulsant profile in animal models and is largely devoid of adverse psychoactive effects and abuse liability...
December 2017: Journal of Epilepsy Research
Shane Shucheng Wong, Timothy E Wilens
CONTEXT: Legalization of medical marijuana in many states has led to a widening gap between the accessibility and the evidence for cannabinoids as a medical treatment. OBJECTIVE: To systematically review published reports to identify the evidence base of cannabinoids as a medical treatment in children and adolescents. DATA SOURCES: Based on Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines, a search of PubMed, Medline, and the Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature databases was conducted in May 2017...
November 2017: Pediatrics
Elisa J Sobo
Cannabis is an increasingly sought-after remedy for US children with intractable (biomedically uncontrollable) epilepsy. However, like other complementary-alternative medicine (CAM) modalities, and particularly as a federally illegal, stigmatized substance, it is unsanctioned by mainstream medicine. Parents are largely on their own when it comes to learning about, procuring, dispensing, and monitoring treatments. Exploring how they manage is crucial to better assist them. Moreover, it can illuminate how 'research' done on the ground by laypeople variously disrupts and reinforces lay-expert and science-non-science divides...
August 5, 2017: Social Science & Medicine
Szymon Hryhorowicz, Michal Walczak, Oliwia Zakerska-Banaszak, Ryszard Słomski, Marzena Skrzypczak-Zielińska
Although the application of medical marijuana and cannabinoid drugs is controversial, it is a part of modern-day medicine. The list of diseases in which cannabinoids are promoted as a treatment is constantly expanding. Cases of significant improvement in patients with a very poor prognosis of glioma or epilepsy have already been described. However, the occurrence of side effects is still difficult to estimate, and the current knowledge of the therapeutic effects of cannabinoids is still insufficient. In our opinion, the answers to many questions and concerns regarding the medical use of cannabis can be provided by pharmacogenetics...
May 22, 2017: European Journal of Drug Metabolism and Pharmacokinetics
Carl R Lupica, Yuhan Hu, Orrin Devinsky, Alexander F Hoffman
Extensive pioneering studies performed in the hippocampus have greatly contributed to our knowledge of an endogenous cannabinoid system comprised of the molecular machinery necessary to process endocannabinoid lipid messengers and their associated cannabinoid receptors. Moreover, a foundation of knowledge regarding the function of hippocampal circuits, and its role in supporting synaptic plasticity has facilitated our understanding of the roles cannabinoids play in the diverse behaviors in which the hippocampus participates, in both normal and pathological states...
April 6, 2017: Neuropharmacology
Julia Fleming Beattie, Matthew D Thompson, Pamela H Parks, Ruth Q Jacobs, Monisha Goyal
Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) includes a wide range of practices and products that are generally outside the use of conventional medicine as practiced in Western cultures. Use of CAM in persons with epilepsy is high, even compared to individuals with other chronic health conditions. In this study, we surveyed caregivers of children admitted to a regional epilepsy monitoring unit (EMU) in the southeast United States to assess CAM use among patients (N=225). Thirteen percent of respondents indicated current use of CAM by their child, 16% reported past use, and 43% reported interest in future use, most commonly in marijuana as a potential treatment (23%)...
April 2017: Epilepsy & Behavior: E&B
Evan C Rosenberg, Pabitra H Patra, Benjamin J Whalley
The isolation and identification of the discrete plant cannabinoids in marijuana revived interest in analyzing historical therapeutic claims made for cannabis in clinical case studies and anecdotes. In particular, sources as old as the 11th and 15th centuries claimed efficacy for crude marijuana extracts in the treatment of convulsive disorders, prompting a particularly active area of preclinical research into the therapeutic potential of plant cannabinoids in epilepsy. Since that time, a large body of literature has accumulated describing the effects of several of the >100 individual plant cannabinoids in preclinical models of seizures, epilepsy, epileptogenesis, and epilepsy-related neuroprotection...
May 2017: Epilepsy & Behavior: E&B
Brooke K O'Connell, David Gloss, Orrin Devinsky
Treatment-resistant epilepsy (TRE) affects 30% of epilepsy patients and is associated with severe morbidity and increased mortality. Cannabis-based therapies have been used to treat epilepsy for millennia, but only in the last few years have we begun to collect data from adequately powered placebo-controlled, randomized trials (RCTs) with cannabidiol (CBD), a cannabis derivative. Previously, information was limited to case reports, small series, and surveys reporting on the use of CBD and diverse medical marijuana (MMJ) preparations containing: tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD, and many other cannabinoids in differing combinations...
May 2017: Epilepsy & Behavior: E&B
Alice Mead
In the United States, federal and state laws regarding the medical use of cannabis and cannabinoids are in conflict and have led to confusion among patients, caregivers, and healthcare providers. Currently, cannabis is legal for medical purposes in 50% of the states, and another seventeen states allow products that are high in cannabidiol (CBD) and low in THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) for medical use. Many of these artisanal products are sold in dispensaries or over the internet. However, none of these products has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)...
May 2017: Epilepsy & Behavior: E&B
Magdalena Szaflarski, Joseph I Sirven
Of all the various treatment options for epilepsy, no other therapy comes close to the polarity that cannabis engenders. The rationale for this reaction is firmly rooted in the social factors that enshroud the use of marijuana for both medical and recreational purposes. In order to best understand how to approach this controversial treatment, it is essential to explore the social, demographic, and historical variables that have led to the current opinions on cannabis therapy and how this has converged on epilepsy treatment...
May 2017: Epilepsy & Behavior: E&B
Shanna Babalonis, Margaret Haney, Robert J Malcolm, Michelle R Lofwall, Victoria R Votaw, Steven Sparenborg, Sharon L Walsh
BACKGROUND: Cannabidiol (CBD) is a naturally occurring constituent of the marijuana plant. In the past few years, there has been great interest in the therapeutic effects of isolated CBD and it is currently being explored for numerous disease conditions (e.g., pain, epilepsy, cancer, various drug dependencies). However, CBD remains a Schedule I drug on the U.S. Controlled Substances Act (CSA). Despite its status, there are no well-controlled data available regarding its abuse liability...
March 1, 2017: Drug and Alcohol Dependence
Staci A Gruber, Kelly A Sagar, Mary K Dahlgren, Megan T Racine, Rosemary T Smith, Scott E Lukas
Currently, 25 states and Washington DC have enacted full medical marijuana (MMJ) programs while 18 states allow limited access to MMJ products. Limited access states permit low (or zero) tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and high cannabidiol (CBD) products to treat specified conditions such as uncontrolled epilepsy. Although MMJ products are derived from the same plant species as recreational MJ, they are often selected for their unique cannabinoid constituents and ratios, not typically sought by recreational users, which may impact neurocognitive outcomes...
2016: Frontiers in Pharmacology
David E Mandelbaum, Suzanne M de la Monte
The growing use and legalization of cannabis are leading to increased exposures across all age groups, including in adolescence. The touting of its medicinal values stems from anecdotal reports related to treatment of a broad range of illnesses including epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, muscle spasms, arthritis, obesity, cancer, Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, post-traumatic stress, inflammatory bowel disease, and anxiety. However, anecdotal data and the high level of interest in this treatment must not obscure objective assessments of any potential and realized short- and long-term adverse effects of cannabis, particularly with respect to age of onset and chronicity of exposure...
January 2017: Pediatric Neurology
Sanjeev Sivakumar, Deepti Zutshi, Navid Seraji-Bozorgzad, Aashit K Shah
Marijuana-based treatment for refractory epilepsy shows promise in surveys, case series, and clinical trials. However, literature on their EEG effects is sparse. Our objective is to analyze the effect of marijuana on EEG in a 24-year-old patient with idiopathic generalized epilepsy treated with cannabis. We blindly reviewed 3 long-term EEGs-a 24-hour study while only on antiepileptic drugs, a 72-hour EEG with Cannabis indica smoked on days 1 and 3 in addition to antiepileptic drugs, and a 48-hour EEG with combination C indica/sativa smoked on day 1 plus antiepileptic drugs...
January 2017: Journal of Clinical Neurophysiology: Official Publication of the American Electroencephalographic Society
Evan J Hess, Kirsten A Moody, Alexandra L Geffrey, Sarah F Pollack, Lauren A Skirvin, Patricia L Bruno, Jan L Paolini, Elizabeth A Thiele
OBJECTIVE: Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) is an autosomal-dominant genetic disorder with highly variable expression. The most common neurologic manifestation of TSC is epilepsy, which affects approximately 85% of patients, 63% of whom develop treatment-resistant epilepsy. Herein, we evaluate the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of cannabidiol (CBD), a nonpsychoactive compound derived from the marijuana plant, as an adjunct to current antiepileptic drugs in patients with refractory seizures in the setting of TSC...
October 2016: Epilepsia
Michelle R Peace, Karen E Butler, Carl E Wolf, Justin L Poklis, Alphonse Poklis
Since 24 states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana in some form, suppliers of legal marijuana have developed Cannabis sativa products for use in electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes). Personal battery powered vaporizers, or e-cigarettes, were developed to deliver a nicotine vapor such that smokers could simulate smoking tobacco without the inherent pathology of inhaled tobacco smoke. The liquid formulations used in these devices are comprised of an active ingredient such as nicotine mixed with vegetable glycerin (VG) and/or propylene glycol (PG) and flavorings...
2016: Frontiers in Pharmacology
Pellegrino Lippiello, Simona Balestrini, Antonio Leo, Antonietta Coppola, Rita Citraro, Maurizio Elia, Emilio Russo, Giovambattista De Sarro
BACKGROUND: Several antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), about 25, are currently clinically available for the treatment of patients with epilepsy. Despite this armamentarium and the many recently introduced AEDs, no major advances have been achieved considering the number of drug resistant patients, while many benefits have been indeed obtained for other clinical outcomes (e.g. better tolerability, less interactions). Cannabinoids have long been studied for their potential therapeutical use and more recently phytocannabinoids have been considered a valuable tool for the treatment of several neurological disorders including epilepsy...
2016: Current Pharmaceutical Design
Andreu Massot-Tarrús, Richard S McLachlan
OBJECTIVES: Epidemiologic evidence supporting antiseizure properties of cannabis is limited and controversial. We determined the prevalence of marijuana use and its perceived effects in patients with and without epilepsy. METHODS: Information was collected over 14months from consecutive adult patients admitted to an epilepsy monitoring unit using a 27-item anonymous questionnaire. Patients with cognitive impairment unable to understand the questions or give informed consent and readmissions were not recruited...
October 2016: Epilepsy & Behavior: E&B
Víctor Manuel Rivera-Olmos, Marisela C Parra-Bernal
The consumption of marijuana extracted from Cannabis sativa and indica plants involves an important cultural impact in Mexico. Their psychological stimulatory effect is widely recognized; their biochemical and molecular components interact with CB1 and CB2 (endocannabinoid system) receptors in various central nervous system structures (CNS) and immune cells. The psychoactive element Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) can be reproduced synthetically. Systematic reviews show evidence of therapeutic effectiveness of therapeutic marijuana only for certain symptoms of multiple sclerosis (spasticity, spasms and pain), despite attempts for its widespread use, including refractory childhood epilepsy...
September 2016: Revista Médica del Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social
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