CBD for schizophrenia?

ResearcResearch shows that CBD, a non-intoxicating cannabinoid present in the Cannabis plant, can be beneficial for many different conditions. Some studies have shown that CBD has antipsychotic properties.

Photo by Michael Fischer from Pexels
Photo by Michael Fischer (Pexels)

Schizophrenia is a chronic and severe mental disorder that can affect how a person thinks, feels, and behaves. People with schizophrenia may seem like they have lost touch with reality. Although schizophrenia is not as common as other mental disorders, the symptoms can be very disabling. These symptoms can include hallucinations, delusions, reduced feelings of pleasure in everyday life, reduced speaking, trouble focusing, and problems with executive function.

Photo by Serkan Göktay from Pexels
Photo by Serkan Göktay (Pexels)

Recently, a group led by Philip McGuire, a Professor of Psychiatry & Cognitive Neuroscience, and head of the Department of Psychosis Studies at King’s College of London conducted research on the benefits of CBD in people with schizophrenia. Their study was a multicenter randomized control trial of 88 subjects. In the trial the patients continued to take their existing antipsychotic medications. One half of the subjects had a placebo and the other half took 1000mg of CBD a day. After 6 weeks of treatment, compared with the placebo group, the CBD group had lower levels of positive psychotic symptoms and were more likely to have been rated as improved and as not severely unwell by the treating clinician. Patients who received CBD also showed greater improvements that fell short of statistical significance in cognitive performance and in overall functioning. The CBD was well tolerated, and rates of adverse events were similar between the CBD and placebo groups. The most common side effect noted in both groups was upset stomach. 

Their findings suggest that CBD has beneficial effects in patients with schizophrenia. As CBD’s effects don’t appear to depend on dopamine receptor antagonism, it may represent a new class of treatment for the disorder. Read more at the American Journal of Psychiatry

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