Doctors Using Cannabis to Treat Autism in First-of-Its-Kind Study
After seeing marijuana’s success in treating epilepsy, an Israeli pediatrician has launched a clinical trial to study the effects of medical cannabis on autistic children and adults.
According to Haaretz, Dr. Adi Eran, head of the pediatrics neurology department at Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, will be heading up the endeavor, which is in the process of obtaining permits from the Health Ministry. The study will reportedly involve 120 autistic individuals, male and female, aged 4 to 30, who are defined as low to medium functioning. Participants will be given cannabis oils free of THC but rich in CBD.
“Per the norm in proper clinical research, participants will be divided into two groups: the test group that actually ingests the oil, and the control subjects who will be given placebos,” Haaretz reported. “After a test period during which the effects on the patients will be recorded, treatment will be halted for a month, then the groups will be reversed—the test group will become the control group and vice versa. Again, as is typical in such research, at no point will subjects or their families know whether the patient is receiving CBD or a placebo.”
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Doctors Complain about Medical Marijuana Knowledge Gap
CNN recently interviewed a physician in Maine who said she would like to counsel her patients on the use of medical marijuana but feels unprepared.
And Maine passed its Medical Marijuana Act in 1999.
Dr. Jean Antonucci told CNN that she still feels “completely in the dark” about whether marijuana is the right way to treat an ailment, what the dose should be and whether a patient should smoke it, eat it, apply it or vaporize it.
Most physicians have never been trained to deal with these issues, which are still not covered in medical schools.
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