New study supports cannabis in treating autism in children

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The latest study confirms earlier autism research

There have already been several studies conducted in recent years that suggest how cannabis can be beneficial in treating symptoms associated with autism in children. Now, a new study confirms those earlier reports and suggests that cannabis can be effective in reducing or eliminating facial tics, restlessness, rage attacks and seizures.

Researchers at the Ben-Guion University (BGU) and Soroka University Medical Center in Israel published their findings yesterday. BGU is the same university that showed last year how cannabis is beneficial to seniors. In the latest study, cannabis produced substantially more conclusive results than other autism treatments, with 80% of parents reporting “significant or moderate” improvement in their children’s functionality.

Dr. Gal Meiri of the Negev Autism Center at BGU explains, “We analyzed the data prospectively collected as part of the treatment program of 188 ASD patients treated with medical cannabis between 2015 and 2017. The treatment in majority of the patients was based on cannabis oil containing 30 percent cannabidiol oil (CBD) and 1.5 percent tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Symptoms, patient global assessment and side effects at six months were primary outcomes of interest and were assessed by structured questionnaires.”

Quality of life reportedly improved from 31.5% to 66.8%. Positive moods increased from 42% to 63.5% and concentration went from zero to 14% during the treatment.

The work of the researchers isn’t done, though. Dr. Victor Novack, who works for the BGU-Soroka Clinical Cannabis Research Institute, adds, “While this study suggest that cannabis treatment is safe and can improve ASD symptoms and improve ASD patients’ quality of life, we believe that double-blind placebo-controlled trials are crucial for a better understanding of the cannabis effect on ASD patients.”