Researchers in Israel are formulating a study to test if CBD could be used to help people with autism. The study will be headed by Dr. Adi Eran, the head of the pediatrics neurology department at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem. Dr. Eran has already obtained authorization from the Israel Health Ministry and is currently gathering the other needed authorizations to conduct this study, as well as gathering subjects for the study.
The cannabis and autism study will consist of 120 autistic individuals ranging from ages 4 to 30 who will be split into a test group and a placebo group. The test group will ingest a CBD oil, while the other group will receive a placebo. After the test period, the effects of the CBD oil will be recorded. The study will then be halted for one month, after which the groups will reverse and the former placebo group will receive a dose of CBD oil. At no point in the study will the patients or their families know if they are in the group receiving CBD oil or the placebo. The study will focus on changes in the behavioral symptoms of the patients, including their physical aggression and their anxiety levels.
This study will be the first clinical study of cannabis’ effect on autism, though there is already some anecdotal evidence for how marijuana has helped people with autism. Tikes Olam, an Israeli medical cannabis provider, is currently providing cannabis oil to 10 autistic people between the ages of 8 and 22. Nurse Naama Saban says that the CBD oil has helped the patients to become significantly calmer and less violent. 30% of people with autism also have epilepsy, and CBD heavy medical cannabis has already proven to be extremely beneficial for seizures. The researchers are hopeful that cannabis will provide new hope for patients with autism and their families.
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