I was fortunate enough last week to be able to listen to a pediatric neurologist give a talk about CBDs and epilepsy. The title of his talk was “Demystifying CBDs with Dr. Colin Roberts.”
The general public is so obsessed these days about marijuana and making it legal – and talking about it as a natural substance. It is, in reality, so much more complex than being natural, aka healthy. In my humble opinion, natural is not equivalent to being healthy. Hurricanes are natural. Tornadoes are natural. Fire is natural. Epilepsy is natural.
Just because something is natural does not mean it’s healthy. Just because something is being talked about today, does not mean it’s the first time anyone has thought of it as a cure.
At the beginning of Dr. Roberts’ talk, he passed around this bottle that once contained a medication called “Elepizone – Certain Cure for Fits & Epilepsy.” I believe Dr. Roberts told us this was just bologna, and never a cure for epilepsy. It was available in the late 1800’s. Epilepsy has been around since brains have been around. People have wanted a cure forever – once they got passed thinking a person was possessed by demons, anyway.
As for CBDs, we have come a long way in just the last few years. There is a new medication called Epidiolex that has been approved by the FDA for Dravet and Lennox Gastaut Syndromes. It is possible that this medication may prove to be beneficial for other types of epilepsy, but at this time, research has only been proven to help those living with these two syndromes.
Listening to Dr. Roberts, while letting many people down, gave me hope. It seems that the media and many people in the pro-marijuana circle have led people to believe that the little green leaf that calms people and puts a smile on their face could be the answer to curing epilepsy. In the 22 years I have been working with neurologists across our country to control my daughter’s seizures, I have realized there is not one cure; not for my daughter, or for anyone living with epilepsy. However, listening to Dr. Roberts speak, I heard excitement and I heard hope. His hope was not a glimmer in the distance, but hope that is in the air right now. It is present. He never expected our federal government to remove the lines they drew as quickly as they have in the past year. Our government has realized there may be a great quality drawn from this recreational drug to help people living with epilepsy. Seeing the eyes of a man of science light up with this hope gave me a feeling that my dream of seeing a cure for epilepsy in my lifetime may actually happen.
I encourage anyone and everyone to attend any talk or lecture regarding CBDs and the possibilities of treating epilepsy, parkinsons, or any other neurological condition. I do not believe it’s an end all, cure all. I do believe we will find it useful in treating many ailments. The sooner we can get backing for research, the sooner we will find all of its benefits.