Cannabidiol in Pediatric Epilepsy
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Purpose of Review
To summarize current understanding of the role of endocannabinoids as well as exogenous cannabinoids such as tetrahydrocannabiniol and cannabidiol in the functions of the body, including the brain, and to explore the role of cannabidiol in the treatment of pediatric epilepsy.
Previously, the evidence supporting the role of cannabidiol in the treatment of epilepsy was largely anecdotal. In 2017, two randomized, placebo-controlled, clinical trials suggested that cannabidiol may be effective in the treatment of epilepsy, though conclusions about both seizure reduction and adverse effects are clouded by the large number of patients taking concomitant anti-seizure medications (such as valproic acid and clobazam) whose serum levels are often increased with the administration of cannabidiol.
Cannabidiol has been well-tolerated in pediatric patients and may be an effective treatment for medically intractable epilepsy. Future studies that control for concomitant administration of clobazam and/or valproic acid are necessary.
KeywordsCannabidiol CBD Cannabis Epilepsy
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
Dallas Armstrong declares no conflicts of interest. Eric Marsh reports grants and non-financial support from Greenwich Pharma, grants and non-financial support from Zogenix Pharma, personal fees from Easai Pharma, personal fees from Cydan Pharma, non-financial support from Rett Syndrome Research Trust, grants from NIH, and grants from State of PA, outside the submitted work.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance
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