Resident Physician University of California, Irvine. Orange, California
Rationale: Cannabidiol (CBD) is a chemical compound derived from the Cannabis plant species which has gained popularity over the years due to its efficacy in treating multiple medical conditions. The world of epilepsy changed in June 2018 when Epidiolex (Cannabidiol) was FDA approved for treatment of Lennox Gastaut (LGS) and Dravet syndrome [1,2].Since limited data exists with regards to cannabidiol’s efficacy in treating epilepsies other than LGS or Dravet, and up to 35% of patients with drug resistant epilepsy have inadequate seizure control despite currently available treatments, the objective of our study was to determine whether CBD would be effective in reducing seizure frequency in epileptic conditions other than LGS and Dravet. Methods: This was a retrospective review of electronic medical records of patients with drug resistant epilepsy treated at the comprehensive epilepsy program at the University of California, Irvine Medical Center who were prescribed Epidiolex (between October 2018-April 2020). Out of 57 patients who were prescribed Epidiolex, 33 patients, between ages 20-60 received the medication for an average of nine months (range 3-17 months), and were included in this study. Their epilepsy types included focal epilepsy (N=12), LGS (N=19) and primary generalized (N=2). Wilcoxon Sign Test was used to compare the paired pre-post change in seizure frequency. Results: In all three groups, there was a 58.2% mean reduction in seizure frequency (p = 0.002). Patients with LGS had a 52.6% mean reduction in seizure frequency (p = 0.002), and patients with focal epilepsy had a 61.7% mean percentage reduction in seizure frequency (p=0.139). 21.2% of the patients discontinued Epidiolex due to side effects or lack of efficacy. Conclusions: Our results confirm the effectiveness of Epidiolex in significantly reducing seizure frequency in patients with LGS. Despite our data showing no statistically significant reduction in seizure frequency in patients with treatment resistant focal or generalized epilepsy who received Epidiolex, given our limited sample size, a firm conclusion regarding its lack of efficacy cannot be made. The majority of patients in focal epilepsy group reported a reduction in their seizure frequency and decided to continue on the medication. We plan to follow up on this study with a larger sample size in the near future. Funding: Please list any funding that was received in support of this abstract.: None.