Cannabis-based treatment may cut epileptic seizures in half in patients with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS), according to a large scale clinical study to be presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 69th Annual Meeting next week.
LGS seizures are classically difficult to control and usually do not respond well to medications. However, in this study of 225 individuals, almost 40 per cent had at least a 50 per cent reduction in drop seizures when taking liquid cannabidiol compared to 15 per cent taking a placebo. Participants had had an average of 85 drop seizures per month and had already tried an average of six epilepsy medications. Those receiving cannabidiol were up to 2.6 times more likely to say their overall condition had improved.
“Our results suggest that cannabidiol may be effective for those with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome in treating drop seizures,” said study author, Anup Patel. “This is important because this kind of epilepsy is incredibly difficult to treat. While there were more side effects for those taking cannabidiol, they were mostly well-tolerated. I believe that it may become an important new treatment option for these patients.”
There is currently a plan to submit a New Drug Application to the FDA later this year.