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Does the addition of cannabidiol to conventional antiepileptic drug treatment reduce seizure frequency in dogs with epilepsy?
  1. Lisa Morrow and
  2. Zoe Belshaw
  1. Centre for Evidence-based Veterinary Medicine, University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington, UK

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Bottom line

  • The current evidence on whether cannabidiol combined with conventional antiepileptic drugs can reduce seizure frequency in dogs with idiopathic epilepsy is inconclusive. Larger studies using more sensitive measures of seizure frequency will be needed to fully answer this question.

Clinical scenario

Bonzo is a five-year-old Staffordshire bull terrier that has been treated for idiopathic epilepsy with phenobarbitone and potassium bromide (KBr) – you had previously tried levetiracetam, but the combination of phenobarbital and KBr was more efficacious in Bonzo’s case. However, he is still having more than two seizures a month, despite achieving therapeutic levels of the drugs in his blood. You and the owner are keen to improve this if possible.

There has recently been much news coverage regarding the use of cannabidiol (CBD) to treat epilepsy in people. So, you wonder if introducing CBD alongside the current treatment regimen would reduce the frequency of Bonzo’s seizures.

The question

In [dogs with idiopathic epilepsy] does [cannabidiol in combination with current treatment compared with placebo plus current treatment] [decrease seizure frequency]?

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