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2023 Study: Cannabis for Autism

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Cannabis for Autism

A 2023 study entitled "Individually Tailored Dosage Regimen of Full-spectrum Cannabis Extracts for Autistic Core and Comorbid Symptoms: A Real-life Report of Multi-symptomatic Benefits" that was published in the journal Frontiers in Psychiatry described "an open label, real-life study with 20 patients."

A group of happy autistic children.
Does cannabis help autism?

Cannabis for Autism Study Results

2023 Study: Cannabis for Autism. After between three and 21 months of treatment with full-spectrum cannabis extracts (FCE), the study's authors declared that there were perceived improvements among the autistic patients and their families. Dosing was different for each patient and resulted in "individually tailored CBD to THC proportions ranging from 49:1 to 1:22."


The study reported that participants displayed "improvement in all aspects evaluated." Negative side effects were noted as mild and included "untoward interactions with other medications." The scientists explained that a quality of life improvement following treatment with FCE occurred in 19 out of 20 study participants.


"It is reasonable to speculate that most individual conditions within the autistic spectrum may benefit from a particular cannabis extract composition."

Reported the researchers: "It is reasonable to speculate that most individual conditions within the autistic spectrum may benefit from a particular cannabis extract composition and posology—even though some individuals may not benefit from it at all."


The study noted that some scientists and researchers believe the most beneficial treatment for autism to be CBD-rich or pure CBD extracts, particularly for the treatment of core symptoms. Despite this, "available data do not conclusively support this," reported the study.

A young autistic woman plays a video game.
Marijuana may help some ASD symptoms.

Cannabis for Autism Study Conclusions

2023 Study: Cannabis for Autism. The study's authors provided the following conclusion based on their data and analysis:


"In sum, this work reinforces the benefits of the full spectrum Cannabis extract for treatment of people in the autistic spectrum, and proposes individually-tailored, response-based dosage regimen guidelines for this population. Both the patient's and their family's quality of life improved significantly after treatment.


"This work reinforces the benefits of the full spectrum cannabis extract for treatment of people in the autistic spectrum."

"Our study expands the scientific data demonstrating that clinical use of cannabis extracts is a safe intervention with promising and valuable effects over many core and comorbid aspects of autism, that are not achieved by conventional medications.


"In addition, we have shown, for the first time, that allotriophagy (Pica), another important comorbidity relatively frequent in ASD, may also be effectively treated by cannabis extracts. Side effects from FCE were mild and mostly did not preclude treatment. Further studies with larger samples will be necessary to confirm our overall positive results as well as to further validate our suggested dosage guidelines and new patient/parents-reported outcome questionnaire for ASD."


View the original study.

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