CBD oil from hemp legalized in Texas to treat epilepsy, as marijuana puts Big Pharma to shame It's putting pharmaceutical companies to shame, and opening people's eyes to the many natural plant medicines that exist. The dispensaries will cultivate marijuana plants and synthesize the low-THC Categories: Briefs, Florida Medical Cannabis Business & Marijuana Legal News, . Stores selling CBD – a nonpsychoactive component of marijuana as if Texas recently enacted a sweeping medical cannabis program. Bottles labeled as CBD oil are displayed for sale at the Austin .. The DEA recently downgraded a formulation of CBD in a new prescription-only epilepsy drug called.
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So, we went through two stages, we first, together with many other centres around the world, started giving it out and in what we call an open label. But those studies were quite encouraging, the safety profile — that is the side effects — were also very favourable. So, for those reasons we went for it with large randomised control trials. So, we did trials and three of them have now been completed and essentially in all three trials the CBD — the cannabidiol — was quite significantly more effective than a placebo in reducing convulsive seizures or drop seizures, which are bad seizures for these children and young adults.
What do we think the mechanism might be? We believe the primary mechanism is a direct effect on the brain. The second part of your question is could it be affecting levels of other medications.
The answer is that may be a small part, we think, of why it works in some patients. The only drug that we know that it has a significant interaction with is one called clobazam and it raises the metabolite of that drug, which is an active metabolite and can potentially produce side effects and potentially produce therapeutic effects. But we see roughly the same benefit in children, in young adults, who are not on that drug. So, based on animal studies and based on a lot of human data at this time we believe that the primary mechanism by which it works is a direct effect on the brain.
Where might this fit in to your existing choice of medication? I mean given the difficult legal status in some countries, given the lack of licensing are there not other drugs that you could use to achieve the same effect? I think with all of medicine we should look at risk and benefit. I think for this medication, CBD, it is roughly as effective as many of the other drugs that we have to treat these severe epilepsies and I do believe, from my experience of now treating hundreds of patients, that the side effect profile is actually more favourable.
Some of the drugs are really potentially more toxic. And the long-term effects of any drugs are not well studied — CBD or especially the ones that doctors, like myselves [sic] and those in the UK have been using for decades. Professor Orrin Devinsky talking to me online from his busy clinic in New York. Margaret, at least Professor Orrin is only looking at one compound here, which makes things a little bit simpler.
Oh yes and for a chemical that we know is psychoactive and may have some use in medicine our trial evidence is really pretty shameful. Up until there had been two reviews done, trying to gather together all the randomised control trials, the highest quality evidence for use of cannabinoids and less than a hundred patients had been randomised to a treatment or not.
And also, they apply to children with specific syndromes, not perhaps to children with epilepsy more broadly. Well this is something, if you look at the literature, this is something that many researchers really complain about most bitterly. Thank you very much Margaret. And as ever there are links to more information on the subject on the Inside Health page of the Radio 4 website.
The new vaccine contains an extra ingredient, an adjuvant, which boosts how older people react to the jab, hopefully prompting better immunity. But what is it about an older immune system that makes it less reactive? Now ageing of the immune system is not in just one component, each one in turn might go wrong but as with every good army you need communication and the communication also breaks down between all the different parts of the immune army. Our immune system, like most organs in our body, starts ageing from the time you were born.
And our cut off for an older age group that we study is over Some people will show problems even in their 40s. So, if you like, the generals of the army are the white cell called a T-lymphocyte. And we find that there are lots of changes that these cells have as you get older.
And is that a consequence of the cell itself being older? The important ones that regulate what goes on are the ones like the T cells. Is that an age-related thing do we think? What was going wrong there? Unfortunately, sometimes, their guess is not necessarily correct. So again, it comes back to the immune system not working very well. And something I would like to emphasise is although it might not prevent you from getting the flu it will reduce the severity of your disease.
So, one way by protecting the older people is actually vaccinating other people. Indirectly — through herd immunity. And another way that we are using in the lab is to try and make flu vaccines work better. And this inhibits the inflammation temporarily in older humans and we ask if we challenge these individuals before and after we block the inflammation do we get a better response afterwards.
Have you shown that you actually get more immunity as a result of the vaccination? The next step is then to test the question of whether this would actually work in a proper vaccine setting, for example influenza. And you would hope that it would clear the view. No, this is very true, we know for example the shingles vaccine works much better if you get it at 70 years old rather than And we know this is the case for the majority of vaccinations we currently give out in the UK. Where you will also find details on how to get in touch.
Frances emailed asking for some guidance about a common problem often turned up during medicals — blood in her urine. Not that she had noticed. As a result, I was referred first for a urinary tract ultrasound and then for a bladder examination.
I think I know just the person to ask Frances. So, there are a few things that can help us do that. So those sorts of patients should definitely be assessed. So, the older you are the more you should be concerned if you suddenly have blood discovered in your urine on testing. Patients over the age of 40 do get assessed. And then the final risk factor that I always concern about is smoking. And we know that smoking doubles at least the risk of patients developing bladder cancer, which is our main concern here.
And so, people who are heavy smokers who are found to have blood in the wee, again that might increase my threshold for wanting them to be assessed. And when you say assessed, how should that be and how urgently? The first thing always is to repeat it.
I would never expect someone to be referred on, on the basis of a single positive finding. So, the national guidance is that if two out of three tests are positive then that should mean an onward referral. And they would tend to come — those patients — would tend to come and see us in the haematuria clinic. And so, we know that for most of those patients that blood is coming through from their kidneys and the sort of story I tell people is to kind of visualise their kidneys as a glorified sieve and the sieve is keeping back the cells in the blood and letting through the fluid that becomes the urine.
And of course, if that sieve becomes slightly leaky red blood cells, which are tiny, start to leak through into the urine. And our dipstick test that we now do are so sensitive they pick up an absolutely tiny amount of blood in the urine. Hemp cannabis, on the other hand, does not contain enough THC to cause these 'psychoactive' effects.
Suppliers in England and Wales have to obtain a licence to sell it as a medicine, following the decision in October two years ago. Manufacturers are able to avoid the strict regulation by selling it as a food supplement - ignoring the lengthy process of gaining a medicinal licence. CBD products comes in many forms, the most popular being an oil - which users spray under their tongue - or gel tablets which melt slowly in the mouth.
And because CBD is a legal ingredient, it is not tested for in drug tests used to detect illegal drugs. Suppliers have to obtain a licence to sell it as a medicine. But m anufacturers are able to avoid regulation by selling it as a food supplement - ignoring the lengthy process of gaining a medicinal licence. However, cannabis oil, which contains THC - the compound that gives users a 'high' - is illegal under UK laws.
Home Secretary Sajid Javid's announcement in July that medicinal cannabis will be available on prescription from this autumn opened the door for oils to be given the green light if approved by the drug regulator.
No, CBD is not addictive. An addiction to marijuana can develop as a severe form of 'marijuana use disorder', which affects an estimated 30 per cent of marijuana users. This develops out of a person's dependence on the psychoactive effects of THC — the ingredient in the marijuana plant which causes a high and results in withdrawal symptoms. CBD oil can be bought as a herbal food supplement and the World Health Organization has confirmed it is not possible for it to be abused or to cause any harm to people's health.
CBD comes from an entirely different plant — the hemp plant — that contains only trace amounts of THC which are not enough to cause a high. Instead, CBD works by enhancing the effects of other brain chemicals such as serotonin and anandamide.
It does not activate the receptors that make marijuana psychoactive and addictive. In fact, the effects of cannabidiol are opposite to those of THC and can actually block some of the psychoactive effects of THC, which is why CBD is added to medical forms of marijuana prescribed to treat certain disorders. CBD oil is recognised as safe and well-tolerated in healthy people, with few side effects.
A World Health Organization report has confirmed it does not have any potential for abuse or to cause harm, and it is therefore not classed as a controlled substance. The mood-altering part of cannabis that you smoke or eat — the THC — not only makes you feel 'high' but can produce hallucinations, can cause tolerance so you need more and more to produce the same effects and withdrawal symptoms.
According to the Royal College of Psychiatrists, there is mounting evidence linking long-term use of marijuana with serious mental illness, such as depression, and doubles the risk of developing a psychosis such as schizophrenia, especially in those who start using it in their teens. In contrast, CBD is not psychoactive nor addictive. In fact, it actually blocks the effects of THC within the brain, protects brain cells from damage and is increasingly used as an herbal supplement to reduce anxiety and stress and to promote general well-being.
This is made up of communication chemicals in the brain, the millions of cannabinoid receptors with which these interact, and the enzymes that synthesise and break them down. Only selected companies that meet exceptionally high quality standards are allowed to carry its seal of approval. It's important to choose a supplier who provides certification of analysis showing actual CBD and THC levels of purity for each batch produced sometimes known as a 'testing' report and making sure the company is a member of the Cannabis Trade Association.
It's also important not to buy products that claim to use 'whole plant extract' as this is misleading. Instead, you need to compare the actual levels of CBD in milligrams mg in the product. On the packaging of products, the norm is to see the amount of CBD displayed as a percentage. Products with this labelling allow you to see exactly how much CBD you're taking.
If you don't know exactly how many milligrams of CBD is in your capsule then it might be difficult to dose effectively. Find a product that displays the amount per dose be it a capsule, gummy, oil dropper or spray in milligrams. The cannabinoids you make yourself, such as anandamide, pass messages between the brain, nervous system and immune system to help balance key body functions that range from mood, sleep, appetite and memory, through to coordinating the production of hormones, growth and development.
The endocannabinoid system is also involved in regulating inflammation, pain perception and immune responses. It also interacts with many other, non-endocannabinoid signalling systems and has been described as a 'multi-target' supplement that damps down inflammation as well as having beneficial effects on mood, sleep and pain perception — all without causing the high or withdrawal effects associated with marijuana strains of cannabis. Billy Caldwell's mother Charlotte pictured together had seven bottles of cannabis oil confiscated at Heathrow Airport customs, prompting a row over cannabis oil.
Cannabis oil was thrust into the limelight when epileptic boy Billy Caldwell's mother had seven bottles confiscated at Heathrow Airport customs. The year-old sparked a row over the medicinal status of the oil, prompting the Home Office to step in and grant his mother Charlotte an emergency licence for his product that was calming his seizures, which contained THC. Billy's bottles were confiscated on June 11 after she brought them in from Toronto.
On the back of the cases of Billy and fellow epileptic boy Alfie Dingley, six, Home Secretary Sajid Javid called for a review into medicinal cannabis.
In a major shift of policy, he announced in July that some products containing the drug would be available on prescription in the UK from the autumn. And earlier this week it was revealed cannabis-based products for medicinal use will only be available for specialist doctors - not GPs - to prescribe legally. Officials have yet to confirm which medicines may be prescribed, but said they must be regulated as a medicinal product. An estimated 30 per cent of people with epilepsy are resistant to drug treatment, and the search for new and improved treatments has recently focused on cannabinoids.
A pure CBD product Epidiolex has undergone successful clinical trials and an application submitted for a drug license in the US, based on clinical data involving 1, patients. It is being launched in the US this Autumn and should become available on prescription in the UK by mid if approved by the European Medicines Agency early next year.
In a three-month study involving children and young adults with certain forms of epilepsy, for example, almost half experienced a reduction in seizure frequency with CBD. Medical marijuana THC plus CBD has been used clinically to treat chronic pain in terminal cancer that has not responded to opiate analgesics.
There are also anecdotal tales of CBD having beneficial effects against cancer. Cell studies suggest CBD can reduce the proliferation of cancer cells prostate, liver and breast in the laboratory, but this has not yet been tested in human clinical trials published in peer-reviewed journals.
Cancer should only ever be treated under the supervision of an experienced oncology team. If you have cancer and wish to take cannabidiol products, you should discuss this with your medical team first to ensure CBD will not interact with any of the prescribed medicines you are taking. Another British boy with epilepsy was given cannabis oil treatment which clast month after a landmark Home Office ruling.
Alfie Dingley, six, suffers from a rare form of the disease that can cause up to 30 seizures a day. His mother Hannah Deacon, of Kenilworth, Warwickshire, begged the Home Office to let her treat her son with marijuana but they refused. But the youngster last month became the second UK epilepsy sufferer to be allowed cannabis treatment after Home Secretary Sajid Javid's intervention.
CBD can reduce muscle tension, restlessness and fatigue, while improving concentration and anxiety. A study involving people with social anxiety who had not previously received any treatments compared the effects of taking either CBD mg or placebo 90 minutes before undergoing a simulated public speaking test.
These results were then compared against a healthy control group of volunteers, who were tested without any medication. Pre-treatment with CBD significantly reduced anxiety, muddled thoughts, social discomfort and anticipatory anxiety compared with placebo. As a result, those taking cannabidiol extracts performed as well as the healthy controls who did not have generalised social anxiety.
However, taking too high a dose increased anxiety, so start with a low level and slowly increase. CBD is also a promising treatment for panic attacks, obsessive compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder. CBD oil is highly effective for treating many types of pain, including headache, joint pain, endometriosis pain and neuropathic pain due to nerve damage. CBD creams, salves and ointments are equally effective for pain relief when applied directly to painful muscles and joints.
I find that taking CBD at night helps me wake up without muscle or joint aches or pains. CBD not only reduces the level of pain signals reaching the brain but alters the way you respond to them, changing your reaction to pain and helping you feel and cope much better. It also has an anti-inflammatory effect.
Medical Cannabis; Hidden Blood in the Urine; Ageing and Immunity
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