Why More Doctors Are Using CBD To Treat Epilepsy
Even though western medicine is just starting to recognize the validity of CBD for seizures, this is not a new revelation throughout the rest of the world. Use of CBD to treat epilepsy has been around before the advent of modern science. Records from a Sumerian text dating as far back as 2900 BC revealed cannabidiol use for seizure treatment. Similar records were found in Arabia in the 12th-century. As western medicine came along, cannabis received further scrutiny. As far back as 1854, the U.S. Dispensatory was already administering cannabis to patients diagnosed with depression, inanity, chorea, tetanus, insomnia, and muscle pain. Around the same time in the UK, surgeon William O’Shaughnessy popularized using CBD to treat Epilepsy.
Using CBD To Treat Epilepsy is Efficient – But Why?
Properties in CBD focus on different targets, such as calcium ion channels, glutamate receptor antagonists, sodium ion channels, the GATA system and receptor agonists in the brain. Anticonvulsants may affect the neurotransmitters responsible for sending messages or attach themselves to the neurons. This is done to alter the activity of the cell by switching how ions flow into and out of the neurons.
Epilepsy is an extremely complex disorder. The condition occurs due to neuronal misfirings and abnormal electrical discharges in the brain. This results in the uncontrollable convulsions that may arise sporadically and without warning.
Of the approximately 85 different cannabinoids in medical cannabis, CBD is known to have the most anti-convulsive properties. For this reason, many consider the use of CBD when treating CBD to treat epilepsy. Basically, CBD targets different regions of the brain that trigger convulsions. This includes the receptor agonists, GATA transcription factors, sodium and calcium ion channels, and glutamine receptor antagonists. The anti-convulsant properties in CBD may alter the neurotransmitters that attach themselves to the gazillion or so neurons. This changes the functioning of brain cells by altering how ions flow in and out.
What is The Recommended Amount of CBD for Epilepsy?
The following is a list of recommended dosages based on available research and clinical trial results for using CBD to treat epilepsy. These are guidelines and may vary as some individuals may require smaller or higher dosages
Low dose initiation (in children):
- 0.5 mg/kg/day divided into two daily doses (AM / PM)
- Increase every 1-2 weeks by 0.5-1 mg/kg/day
- If little or no change occurs, gradually increase the dosage with more time between dose increases
- Target dose 2-10 mg/kg/day, or stop sooner if seizures stop or side effects prevent further dose increases
Higher dose initiation (in children):
- 1 mg/kg/day divided into two daily doses (AM / PM)
- Increase every 1-2 weeks by 1 mg/kg/day, as long as side effects do not interfere
- If side effects are a problem, go up more gradually with more time between dose increases
- Target dose 2-10 mg/kg/day, or stop sooner if seizures stop or side effects prevent further dose increases. As noted above, higher doses might be tolerated, but we need more experience with the Lone Star product to understand the ranges our patients use
Higher dose in adults: (or children weighing > 50 kg):
- 50 mg twice daily
- Increase every 1-2 weeks by 50 mg/dose
- Target dose 100-300 mg twice daily if tolerated, or stop sooner if seizures stop or side effects prevent further dose increases
- Higher doses have been utilized in some clinical trials, but may not be necessary to achieve good seizure control in all patients