Epilepsy is a neurological disorder that affects the brain and causes recurrent seizures. These seizures can vary in regularity, timing, and intensity level from person to person. There are many types of epilepsy, some of which are caused by underlying medical conditions, while others are classified as idiopathic (meaning the cause is unknown).

Around 1 in 3 people have a family member living with some form of epilepsy, and there are various types of seizures associated with the condition. Seizures can vary in frequency and severity depending on a number of factors but they are often unprovoked. Repeated seizures can permanently affect the brain, and, in rare cases, epilepsy can be fatal. 


Is medical cannabis legal for epilepsy treatment in the UK?


Yes, medical cannabis has been legal for prescription in the UK since November 2018. This landmark change followed decades of discussion on the potential benefits observed in certain patients, including those suffering from severe forms of epilepsy.

Epileptic patients played a huge role in the UK's decision to legalise medical cannabis, with two landmark cases involving children needing to access cannabis-based medical products to manage their conditions hitting the headlines, swaying public and political opinion.


Does the NHS offer medical cannabis prescriptions for epilepsy?


Currently, the NHS will only prescribe medical cannabis for three specific health concerns - muscle spasticity and stiffness cause by MS, nausea relating to cancer treatment, and for two rare forms of epilepsy (Dravet and Lennox-Gastaut syndromes).

If you suffer from any other form of epilepsy, you will need to seek treatment through a private cannabis clinic like Releaf.


Can medical cannabis provide symptomatic relief and seizure reduction for epilepsy?


Absolutely. Recent studies and ongoing research underscore the potential benefits of medical cannabis, particularly for certain types of epilepsy that may not respond well to traditional treatments. The active components in cannabis, such as cannabidiol (CBD) and, in some cases, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), have been observed to have therapeutic effects that might reduce the frequency and intensity of seizures in some patients.


Is CBD or THC more effective for epilepsy treatment in the UK?


There is no definitive answer to this question, as the range of variables involved in epilepsy and its treatment means that there is no single, one-size-fits-all solution. CBD and THC both have shown potential for alleviating symptoms of epilepsy. However, research suggests that CBD may be more effective for certain types of seizures.

The disorder can develop at any age and significantly impact not only the quality of a sufferer's life but also their overall health and well-being. 

To find out more about epilepsy, click here

If you would like to learn more about medical cannabis in the UK, Releaf is here to help.