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A Story of Autism & Cannabis

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#1 SkunkyAroma


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Posted 28 August 2016 - 01:59 AM

A Story of Autism & Cannabis

by Julie Godard


Alex Echols


If you know someone with autism, you may have heard about Alex on the Internet, or may be struggling with a severely autistic child; you may have even been in contact with Alex’s family through Alexneedshelp.com. Alex Echols is a teenager who suffers from tuberous sclerosis, a genetic disorder which has caused autism and seizures since he was young, states Tracy Miller of the New York Daily News. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), tuberous sclerosis causes benign tumor growth on organs such as the brain, kidneys, heart, and lungs and results in seizures, developmental delays, and behavioral problems –the tumors can block the flow of fluid through the brain. Behavioral problems such as sudden rage, aggression, and self-harming or destructive behavior are common with the disease.

Dr. Colin Roberts, Alex’s pediatric neurologist, was interviewed by Fox 12 Oregon News: “Alex cannot communicate using words and that leads to behavior that is very frustrating for him and for those caring for him.” By the time Alex was five, he was consistently inflicting violent injuries on himself, and his parents had to film the behaviors to prove they were not responsible. Under the Oregon Medical Marijuana Act, Alex was able to receive medical marijuana legally in 2010, but due to his parents’ inability to obtain reliable information on how to obtain legal cannabis oil for him or how to measure out a dosage, the family eventually had to send Alex to a state-contracted facility, stated Doll. The family was unable to give Alex the medicine he truly needs now due to federal prohibition.

The Echols family stated on Alex's website: “Marijuana is controversial because its long-term effects on a child are believed to be unknown, and possibly risky. Alex’s other medications [Zoloft, Risperdal, valium, Haldol, Ativan, amitriptyline, etc.] are exactly the same – nobody has data for how long-term use of Risperdal affects a growing child!” The Echols’ point is that the prohibition of marijuana at the federal level is not preventing harm so much as it is causing it, resulting in a lack of research on the effects of cannabis which might be able to help children like Alex.


Alex is now able to get the dosage he needs when he is home. The video above shows a before & after look into Alex's rage and his response to cannabis.

"Is it a miracle plant that fixes everything? No. But on average, if we rated his rage on a scale from 1 to 10, the tincture we’re giving him (as of January 2013) would drop his rage by two points. It’s sometimes far more dramatic than that, and sometimes nothing happens at all. But on average, we see a noticeable difference, even if it’s not dramatic." -Mr. Echols

CNN’s Lauren Sennet reported on Haleigh Cox’s condition, for which Georgia Governor Nathan Deal signed a bill called Haleigh’s Hope Act in 2015 to legalize low-THC cannabis oil for “medication-resistant epilepsies.” The bill also initiated research for the treatment alternative. With legalization sweeping the nation, Bloomberg Businessweek reported that Arena Pharmaceuticals, CannaVest, Plandai Biotechnology, Peak Pharmaceuticals, and Axim Biotechnologies are among 55 companies currently investigating the medical uses of cannabis. René Kurz and Kurt Blaas conducted the first study on the use of dronabinol (tetrahydrocannabinol) in an infant child with autism in 2010; the results were astounding. Following the Aberrant Behavior Checklist or ABC (a National Institute for Health scale which includes behaviors like irritability, agitation, crying, social withdrawal, and lethargy), the infant was given 5 drops of dronabinol per day (morning, noon, and evening) and observed six months after treatment with dronabinol had begun. There were no adverse effects, and the ABC scales were tipped significantly in the areas of hyperactivity, lethargy, and irritability and other common autistic behaviors. Although much more research remains, the initial scientific results and the results many families report for their children will drive the cannabis industry to find a safer, more natural, and more effective treatment for autism in children.

#2 SkunkyAroma


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Posted 17 April 2017 - 05:54 PM

Can Cannabis Cure Autism?




Can Cannabis Cure Autism? We Don’t Know, But It’s a Question Worth Asking


Cannabis is already helping children with autism

AutismOne, the world’s largest and most comprehensive autism conference, is delighted to announce a medical cannabis track for parents and professionals. The conference will be held May 25–29, 2016, at the Loews Chicago O’Hare Hotel, Rosemont, IL.

Of tremendous interest is a scheduled presentation by Dr. Judy Mikovits titled “Can Cannabis Cure Autism? We Don’t Know, But It’s a Question Worth Asking.” Dr. Mikovits, whose long and distinguished career in immune dysfunction and retrovirology said, “Given the potential to mitigate human suffering and lost potential, not only is cannabis as a cure for autism a question worth asking, it is criminal not to do so.”

The Endocannabinoid/Cannabis Medicine track features speakers including John Hicks, MD; Christopher Shade, PhD; Jesse Stanley; Tracy Fritz, MD; Christian Bogner, MD; Brandie Cross, PhD; and Fran Kendall, MD. There is also an Endocannabinoid Medicine Certificate Seminar for professionals and a Medical Cannabis Panel featuring many of the leading advocates from around the country.

“Cannabis and hemp have already proven to be extremely effective for seizures and sleep disorders for children with autism,” said Dr. Hicks. “The healing properties of both have only begun to be investigated.”

Ed Arranga, the president of AutismOne, stated, “Autism is not a psychological disorder or a genetic defect. Autism is an umbrella term covering a collection of chronic comorbid conditions, including abnormal gut flora, allergies, seizures, arthritis neurological sequelae, asthma, autonomic dysfunction, chronic rubella arthritis, colitis, ear infections, eczema, immune dysregulation, incontinence, leaky gut, Lyme disease, PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), sleep disorders, mitochondrial dysfunction, neuroinflammation, oxidative stress, PANDAS (pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with streptococcus), rheumatoid arthritis, severe headaches/migraines, and subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE).”

As Professor Raphael Mechoulam has noted, “It is believed that because endocannabinoid receptors are found throughout the brain and in every major organ of the body is one reason that cannabis treats so many varied illnesses. Countering the chronic comorbid conditions in children with autism, are cannabinoid’s medical properties, which include acting as an antiemetic, anticonvulsant, antipsychotic, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-tumoral, anxiolytic, and anti-depressant.

“It’s an exciting time,” continued Arranga. “For decades, truthful and accurate information about cannabis and autism has been the exception. Now, finally, the medical benefits of cannabis are being recognized, and children with autism are getting better. Ironically, two communities that were written off are coming together to help each other.”

To learn more about AutismOne’s Endocannabinoid/Cannabis Medicine Track please visit http://www.autismone...-medicine-track.

#3 SkunkyAroma


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Posted 27 April 2017 - 09:25 PM

Israeli Study Exploring CBD Treatment for Autism Yielding Positive Early Results
“Israel leads the world in inquiries and studies on cannabis as a potential medical treatment”


by Chris Moore


Over the past decade, cannabidiol has been increasingly established as an effective treatment for children suffering from epilepsy. A new study being conducted in Israel is now testing whether CBD could also help children diagnosed with autism.

The study began this January at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, and will continue though the end of next year. Researchers are testing 120 children and young adults diagnosed with mild to severe autism.  The participants are given one of two different cannabis oil formulas or a placebo to test whether or not the CBD has positive effects.

“Many parents were asking for cannabis for their kids,” said Adi Aran, the pediatric neurologist leading the study. “First I said, 'No, there’s no data to support cannabis for autism, so we can’t give it to you.'” But after an observational study showed positive results for medical marijuana treatments of 70 autistic patients, Aran decided “we need to do a clinical trial so there will be data."

Aran said that it is too early to conclusively say whether or not cannabis is helping his autistic patients, but early reports are positive. Some children have become more communicative, some stopped hurting themselves or throwing tantrums, and some saw enough of a reduction in behavioral problems that they were able to return to classes.

There are currently 110 cannabis clinical trials being conducted in Israel, where medical marijuana has been legal since 1992. Unlike the in the United States where marijuana is still prohibited by the federal government, it is relatively easy to conduct cannabis research in Israel. Alan Shackelford, an American physician who has been trying for years to get approval from U.S. authorities to conduct medical marijuana research, has started an Israeli company to conduct the research he has been prevented from doing. “Israel leads the world in inquiries and studies on cannabis as a potential medical treatment,” he said.

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