Cannabidiol: The Medicine of the Future

With a prescription, you can now have access to Epidiolex, a new drug approved to treat the seizures associated with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. This is just the beginning of a new medical era, with more and more medication based on cannabidiol, an extract of Cannabis sativa, the plant commonly known as marijuana.

What does the approval of Epidiolex signify?

In laboratories all around the world today, experts are experimenting more and more with delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the active component of more than 80 cannabinoids, in order to develop better treatments for seizures and various mental and muscular disorders.

The Agricultural Improvement Act (or farm bill) of 2018 banned the sale of cannabis and its products in the United States, but the use of the substance in laboratories has signified an advance in the search for new and better medicines. Today, with the approval of Epidolex (cannabidiol), an important step has been taken towards staking the claim of cannabis as a medicinal plant, with more advantages than disadvantages for patients of many diseases around the world.

Uses of cannabidiol

Epidiolex is currently used to control seizures both in adults and in children two years of age and older who suffer from Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (a disorder that begins in early childhood and causes seizures, developmental delays, and behavioral problems) or from Dravet syndrome. Clinical research is looking at the use of cannabidiols for treating other ailments and symptoms related to the effect of this chemical.

So far, the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database states that cannabidiol is likely effective for seizure disorders (such as epilepsy) and possibly effective for multiple sclerosis (MS). Although there is still insufficient evidence, it may provide help for bipolar disorders, Crohn’s disease (a type of inflammatory bowel disease), diabetes, movement disorders and muscle contractions such as dystonia, and graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) a condition in which a transplant attacks the body, as well as for insomnia, for assisting withdrawal from heroin, morphine, and other opioid drugs, and even for Parkinson’s disease and schizophrenia.