AURORA, COLORADO – During this spring, Dr. Kelly Knupp, a pediatric epilepsy specialist, and her colleagues will be conducting a three-year, $500,000 observational study at Children’s Hospital in Aurora, Colorado.
Three-Year Cannabis Study Set To Begin This Spring
There has been a lot of recent buzz surrounding the success of medical marijuana in the treatment of childhood epilepsy. Many parents are claiming that medical marijuana has significantly reduced both their children’s seizures frequency and intensity. Because of this, families with children like Charlotte Figi are making the move to MMJ-friendly states, like Colorado, desperate to find an alternative treatment for their child’s severe epileptic disorders.
“Many of these children have very poorly controlled epilepsy and can be pretty fragile from a medical stand point. I think it is our responsibility as professionals to answer this question.” Dr. Knupp
Currently, there are around 250 children with medical marijuana cards who have Dravet’s Syndrome in the state of Colorado. Out of these 250 children, over 100 of them are patients at Children’s Hospital, even though the hospital is not legally permitted to administer cannabis as a form of treatment.
To help provide light to the subject, Knupp and her colleagues will be conducting a study to help increase the research in regards to cannabis and the effectiveness it has on epileptic patients.
“There’s a lot that’s still unknown. Many of these children have very poorly controlled epilepsy and can be pretty fragile from a medical stand point. I think it is our responsibility as professionals to be able to answer their questions and provide the help they need,” says Dr. Knupp.
$500,000 of State-Funded Grant Money Put To Work
Knupp and her colleagues will be using the $500,000 state-funded grant in order to conduct a three-year observational study. The study is going to consist of analyzing the results from 150 medical marijuana patients who consume cannabis products regularly to reduce or relieve their most serious side effects.
According to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, the funding has come from the medical marijuana program’s cash fund. Back in 2013, the state put aside $10 million specifically for medicinal cannabis research projects. It looks as if they are finally putting some of that money to work.
“Most of these families biggest fear is that it won’t work… They’re desperate to have their children better,” says Dr. Knupp
As the study looks to get underway within the next couple of months, the team at the Children’s Hospital knows there will be plenty of eyes awaiting the results. With the large influx of families looking to medicinal marijuana as a last resort for their children, this study could be the much-needed stepping stone to further research in the field.