EPILEPSY & AUTISM: Their connection with Cannabis as a Treatment

Studies estimate that nearly one-third of people with autism spectrum disorder also have epilepsy. However, until recently, there has been limited clinical research on the connection between these two neurological conditions (Danielsson, Gillberg, Bilstedt, Olsson, and Zaatreh 1). Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a range of complex neurodevelopment disorders, characterized by social impairments, communication difficulties, and restricted, repetitive, and stereotyped patterns of behavior. Autistic disorder, sometimes called autism or classical ASD, is the most severe form of ASD, while other conditions along the spectrum include a milder form known as Asperger syndrome, childhood disintegrative disorder, and pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (usually referred to as PDD-NOS). Although ASD varies significantly in character and severity, it occurs in all ethnic and socioeconomic groups and affects every age group.

Experts estimate that 1 out of 88 children age 8 will have an ASD (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, March 30, 2012). Males are four times more likely to have an ASD than females. In the latest study, researchers found the brains of people with autism have inflammation response genes that are perpetually switched on (Brain study shows inflammation is a marker of autism 1).

In my “Inflammation” article published in Issue 14 of Edibles Magazine, I discussed the ravages of inflammation on the body process, increasing the immune response that inhibits several processes in the body that it needs to operate. There are many theories of the geniuses of both Epilepsy, and Autism, the causes have been linked to environmental factors, genetic disorder, or injury (seen in studies of veterans’ with brain injury), and a plethora of other causes. The parents and caregivers of people affected with these issues report several problems and secondary side effects from the pharmaceutical drugs recommended by their Healthcare Providers. One point that comes forward, inflammation is a resultant cause of symptomatology, regardless of the cause stimulating and sustaining the inflammatory response.

CBD’s have been known to be a natural inflammatory, and are used by my patients both personally and for their children with amazing results. The story of “Charlotte’s Web” that contains high CBD rich oil has seen significant symptom relief in children and adults with severe tremors or seizures that was widely reported on CNN. In conclusion, you may not be able (with today’s diagnostic equipment) to find the specific cause of the disease. However, the after effects like inflammation can be treated effectively with CBD rich strains of Cannabis. The inflammation and secondary effects of the pharmaceuticals that are provided to treat autism and epilepsy have significant side effects which in turn, affect the mood,
and retard the processes of the brain. CBD as both a preventative and a treatment
for inflammation is already tested with positive results among my patients as well as my colleague’s in the medical professions’ patients.

The reason my patients moved to cannabis, as they were able to see first-hand, the results of the plethora of drugs provided by the physicians. Please do not see this as an indictment of the medical profession; the United States government has significantly restricted cannabis. With this said, we need to look to the actual clinical trials the parents are experiencing utilizing the CBD compounds. They are at this time the best source of information on the use of CBD’s and their effects on disease. My patients have been a wealth of information regarding the efficacy of some of the products on the market. With my relationship with several cancer charities, I as a physician get to see first-hand how these remarkable people use these compounds, and the great results they
are experiencing.

Even without a disease expression as I stated in my last article, inflammation is present daily in the body as it fights all the environmental effects, food, water that negatively affect us. Even as a preventative to future disease, CBD’s appear to be the best natural method on the market to live a better, longer life.

Work Cited
Danielsson, S., IC Gillberg, E. Bilstedt, I. Olsson, and Megdad Zaatreh. “The Autism-Epilepsy Connection ” Epilepsy in young adults with autism: a prospective population-based follow-up study of 120 individuals diagnosed in childhood. (2014): n. pag. National Institute of Health (NIH). Web. 07/15/2015.


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