In a world where disease and poor physical health abound, the necessity of having thorough research and proof that certain remedies are effective, whether they be natural remedies or pharmaceutical drugs, is paramount in finding long-term solutions to the many health ailments that exist today.
For this reason, clinical trials are absolutely necessary in order to ascertain which drugs, or remedies, work best for certain disorders and which ones produce adverse events.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a clinical trial as “a scientifically controlled study of the safety and effectiveness of a therapeutic agent (such as a drug or vaccine) using consenting human subjects.” These clinical studies are highly controlled, as any adverse events could potentially be life-threatening for the participants, especially if the subject of study is a strong drug.
A particular area of clinical study that has become very popular in the medical community as of late is the efficacy of the cannabis plant, or as many know as marijuana, on certain disorders.
This is particularly the case because cannabis products have quickly exploded in the marketplace with their claims of effective treatment for many health problems without any considerable adverse events. More specifically, CBD, a cannabinoid derivative of marijuana (and also the hemp plant), is in the spotlight.
What Are CBD Clinical Trials?
CBD Clinical trials have become much more popular over the past few years. This is due to the fact that CBD, or cannabidiol, has been indeed helping millions of people with various health symptoms, thus gaining the attention of the medical world.
Consequently, CBD, especially since 2017, has been heavily studied on patients that have one, or many, health symptoms in an effort to prove the claims of the millions who have greatly benefited from CBD.
CBD clinical trials are, therefore, a type of controlled clinical study treatment that is performed on healthy volunteers, or sometimes even animals, by researchers that lead to an end result (evidence or proof) that either validates, or reputes, the claimed effectiveness of cannabidiol on the health disorders that it is claimed to improve or even cure.
What Can CBD Be Useful For?
The many researchers have produced clinical studies that do indeed seem to suggest that CBD helps improve the symptoms and the severity of the following disorders:
- High blood pressure
- Psychotic disorders
- Chronic pain, such as neuropathic pain or arthritis
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Crohn’s disease
- Stroke rehabilitation
- Liver injury
The following diseases need more study to verify claims that CBD improves them:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Parkinson’s disease
- Multiple Sclerosis
A 2017 study by the University of Messina and the Sapienza University of Rome state this in their conclusion: “Pre-clinical evidence largely shows that CBD can produce beneficial effects in AD, PD and MS patients, but its employment for these disorders needs further confirmation from well designed clinical studies.”
As for Huntington’s disease, a 2011 study done by Complutense University in Madrid seems to think that cannabinoids do have great positive effects in delaying the progression of the disease.
They conclude by stating that their “study provides preclinical evidence in support of a beneficial effect of the cannabis-based medicine Sativex as a neuroprotective agent capable of delaying disease progression in HD.”
Finally, cannabidiol has been thought to be a possible effective treatment option for cancer patients. CBD is thought to improve appetite, pain, and even fight the cancer cells themselves. However, this is one area that has to be studied much more thoroughly to prove the efficacy of CBD improving cancer symptoms.
Putting CBD To The Test
Like mentioned above, CBD is gaining newfound widespread fame over the fact that more and more people are seeing the positive effects that CBD produces in their bodies.
Many participants, knowing of CBD’s miraculous effects, are eager to partake in a clinical study, hoping they too can receive treatment for their chronic pain, seizures, various syndromes, and other neuropathic disorders.
Therefore, although cannabidiol’s effects on the body have been in clinical studies for years, ever since the 1980s, CBD has most recently, over the past few years, been studied more acutely with many different clinical studies conducted all over the world, studying CBD treatment for many different disorders.
CBD Clinical Trials Conclusions
Therapeutic efficacy has been proven by researchers in the following trial conclusions:
Can CBD Help With Seizures in Children?
The New England Journal of Medicine published a 2017 study, which gives strong evidence that CBD helps dramatically reduce convulsive seizures in children with Dravet Syndrome.
This clinical study was double-blind, placebo-controlled, and had 120 child and young adult participants who had Dravet Syndrome and who were also drug-resistant to traditional seizure medicine.
The participants were either given a 20 milligrams per kilogram of body weight or a placebo.
After a 14-week time period, the placebo group only saw a .8 improvement while the CBD group saw a whopping 6.5 percent decrease in convulsive epileptic seizure activity, over half of the original 12.4 percent activity.
Five percent in the CBD group became seizure-free!
Another 2017 study evaluated many young adults over the course of 60 weeks that had Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. The conclusion is as follows:
“CBD resulted in a maintained reduction in both drop and total seizure frequency through 60 wks of exposure, with a high proportion of patients/ caregivers reporting an improvement in overall condition.”
Using CBD For Public Speaking Anxiety
CBD, at the right dose, seems to aid people in delivering public speeches much more effectively.
A 2017 study done by the Department of Neuroscience and Behavior in São Paulo, Brazil, the National Institute of Science and Technology for Translational Medicine in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and the Department of Pharmacology at Ribeirão Preto Medical School (at the University of São Paulo) revealed that the perfect dose of 300 milligrams of CBD daily effectively reduced public-speaking related anxiety in many of the 60 participants, although the anti-panic attack medicine clonazepam did come in first place in treating the condition.
Although it is not surprising to find out that the placebo did not help the anxiety-ridden participants, it is interesting to note that the people who were given the 100-milligram and the 900-milligram CBD dose did not see major improvement as compared with the 300-milligram dose.
Can CBD Help With Treatment-Resistant Seizures?
Patients with seizure disorders such as refractory epilepsy, which is a treatment-resistant type of epilepsy, seemed to respond well to CBD treatment over a period of time, ranging from a month to a year.
The 2017 study titled “Cannabidiol: its use in refractory epilepsies” tells us that out of 15 patients observed, 40 percent of the patients saw a decrease in the frequency of their seizures.
In 27 percent of the patients, the seizures completely disappeared. 60 percent of the participants were able to gain control over 50 percent of their seizures.
Using CBD For Fear Management
Although the following 2017 study, done by the Dept. of Pharmacology at the Federal University of Parana, the Dept. of Pharmacology at the University of São Paulo, and the Dept. of Pharmacology at the Federal University of Santa Catarina was done on rats, the study nonetheless shows the power of CBD on the brain when it comes to the primal fear response.
The 277 rats were given CBD right after being shocked. The results revealed that the CBD, given immediately after the shock, reduced the fear response upon subsequent shocks.
The trick was to always give the rats the CBD right after the shock and not delay the treatment.
Does CBD Reduce High Blood Pressure?
A 2017 study done by the American Society for Clinical Investigation revealed that just one single dose of CBD reduced blood pressure in healthy volunteers via a randomized clinical trial.
This clinical study was a double-blind and had a placebo group. It had nine male participants who were given either 600 milligrams of CBD or placebo. Their heart rates were then monitored afterward while being given tasks that would product mild stress responses in their bodies.
The results revealed that the CBD participants had a lowered stress response, and therefore a lower blood pressure and stroke volume.
CBD For Panic Disorder
A 2017 review done by the Department of Biophysics and Pharmacology, Biosciences Center at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte and the Department of Pharmacology, School of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto at the University of São Paulo compiled studies previously conducted which all had positive findings on CBD as an effective natural remedy for anxiety, which causes Panic Disorder.
The authors start their review by stating that:
“Cannabidiol (CBD) is the major non-psychotomimetic constituent of the Cannabis sativa plant with anti-anxiety properties that has been suggested as an alternative for treating anxiety disorders.”
And then ends with the following conclusion:
“CBD seems to be a promising drug for the treatment of PD.”
Does CBD Get You High?
Although cannabidiol is a cannabinoid, like THC, and is found alongside THC in the marijuana plant, it has no psychoactive effects.
This means that there is no THC content present in CBD, therefore its effects cannot produce a “high” like medical cannabis or recreational marijuana does.
Additionally, CBD can also be derived from the hemp plant, which is not marijuana and therefore does not contain THC.
Can CBD Help With Schizophrenia?
The discovery of CBD as potentially being an effective treatment for schizophrenia has caused excitement in the medical world due to the fact that most traditional schizophrenia medicine leaves the person with the brain disorder so highly sedated that adequate brain function needed for everyday functioning is extremely compromised.
Therefore, although there needs to be more concrete evidence that CBD works well with schizophrenic patients, there is a reason to believe that CBD might be a possible solution for some who have the condition.
This is clearly stated in a 2017 review done by the Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute, University of Wollongong. Gathering evidence from 27 articles written over the past 26 years on the topic of schizophrenia, the authors concluded that:
“The efficacy of CBD to improve cognition in schizophrenia cannot be elucidated due to lack of clinical evidence; however, given the ability of CBD to restore cognition in multiple studies of impairment, further investigation into its efficacy in schizophrenia is warranted.”
Does CBD Affect Our Sweet Taste?
A 2017 study done by the Division of Human Nutrition at Wageningen University gave several study participants either CBD, THC, or a placebo to test which one desired chocolate milk more and if the sweetness level changed.
The results proved that neither THC or CBD had any effect on the participants’ sweet taste, although THC does increase appetite in most people.
CBD And IBS
Apparently, CBD reduces inflammation, which is what causes Irritable Bowel Syndrome. By influencing the endocannabinoid receptors with the CBD cannabinoids, inflammation can be reduced, thus giving people suffering from IBD more lasting relief, as compared to traditional medications that do not help the patient with long-term IBS symptoms.
Using CBD For Liver Injuries
In this 2017 study done by the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Clinical Microbiology and Immunology (Affiliated Hospital of Guiyang Medical University), and the Department of Surgery and Center for Immunity and Inflammation at the Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, it is apparent that CBD can support livers that have been damaged.
This study gave CBD to mice and human blood samples that had been given alcohol over a period of time, thus contributing to liver damage.
The results showed that CBD lowered elevated liver enzymes, reduced liver fat accumulation, increased liver triglycerides, improved abnormal retention of lipids, and also improved metabolic liver impairment.
CBD And Pain
In this 2017 study done by the University of São Paulo and the National Institute of Science and Technology for Translational Medicine, it was revealed that pain perception was directly altered, or lessened, with the administration of CBD to rats before having a surgical incision done to them.
This is due to the CBD cannabinoid interaction with the endocannabinoid pain receptors that, without this CBD interaction, let the brain know that there is something wrong with the body, thus producing pain.
This is great news for people who have chronic pain, like central neuropathic pain or any other type of inflammation that causes pain.
What’s Next For CBD?
Although more research is needed for CBD to become fully accepted into the medical community as a valid treatment option for various chronic inflammation, pain, syndromes, and diseases, CBD is well on its way to becoming the mainstream go-to for anyone who struggles with the above ailments mentioned.
2017 was a pivotal year for CBD, proving many of its miraculous healing powers and will, no doubt, continue to be studied and confirmed in the near future.
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