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MADISON, Ala. (WAAY) – A University of Alabama Birmingham study was launched Tuesday to look at the effects of marijuana extract oil on patients with uncontrollable seizures.
One percent of the population has epilepsy. That’s about 40,000 Alabamians.
Some of those have such a severe form that it can’t be controlled by medication.
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That’s why parents of kids like Charlotte Dalton are so hopeful for the University of Alabama Birmingham study on that’s where marijuana extract oil.
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It’s been just over a year since we first met Charlotte Dalton. She’s gotten taller, her hair has grown, but one thing hasn’t changed.
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“She still has a grand mal seizure at least once a week, if not more. She’ll have drop seizures, where she’ll just drop to the ground, she’ll have several of those a day. That isn’t a way to live,” says Gena Dalton, Charlotte’s mother.
Charlotte suffers from Dravet Syndrome, a rare form of epilepsy, that can’t be controlled by medication.
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“We already have a broken nose, she’s got scars on her face, she’s got chipped teeth… a little kid just can’t live that way,” says Gena.
That’s why Gena is hopeful about what’s happening down at UAB.
Doctors announced Tuesday they had gotten approval from the DEA and other agencies to start the study known as Carly’s Law, looking at the use of cannabidiol, or CBD oil to stop seizures.
“We have an agreement with a vendor to supply enough medication to treat 50 children and 50 adults. That’s an initial agreement, it’s where we’re going to start. It may be that we have more demand than that, I won’t be surprised if we have more demand than that, if we arrive at that point, we’ll have to talk with our vendor or possibly other vendors at that point to see if we can expand the supply,” says Dr. David Standaert, chair of the Department of Neurology at UAB.
Gena Dalton hopes Charlotte can get in.
“We have our application and we’re working through the list of requirements. Lots of documentation to accompany this. It’s quite a long list. I hope to have everything turned in by the end of the week,” Gena says. “Once I do that, I’m going to start probably calling UAB everyday asking “did we get in? Did we get in?”
You can find out more information on how to sign up for the study and the requirements by clicking here.
The study is expected to get up and running in a few weeks.