Up@dawn 2.0

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Medical Marijuana Post II

Most of the time when someone is asked their opinion on medical marijuana they say that they are against it because marijuana is a bad “gateway” drug. This is a real life story of how CBD-rich cannabis helped a young girl overcome her seizures due to epilepsy. This story is meant to educate people on how this drug, when used medically instead of recreationally, can benefit the sick and to give people an idea of what medical marijuana can do before the discussion on whether it is ethical or not, which will be my last blogpost. 
Charlotte Figi had her first seizure when she was 3 months old. Over the next few months, the girl, affectionately called Charlie, had frequent seizures lasting two to four hours, and she was hospitalized repeatedly.The seizures were so severe Charlotte's heart stopped a number of times. Doctors suggested putting the child in a medically induced coma to give her small, battered body a rest.

Matt and Paige Figi have three kids; a son named max and twins chase and charlotte. Charlotte began having seizures at just three months old which either lasted more than 30 minutes or occurred one after another. The parents got many opinions from many doctors and at age two was diagnosed with Dravet, a very severe form of epilepsy. Charlotte was on about seven different drugs, many of them highly addictive, which controlled her seizures for a while, but eventually came back much more violent than before. The family then tried the Ketogenic Diet which is a high fat diet with little carbohydrates. This diet forces the body to make extra ketones which are natural chemicals that suppress seizures. This helped but caused many bad side effects such as bone loss and it caused her immune system to plummet. Soon charlotte lost the ability to walk, eat, and speak. The family lost hope and signed a do-not-resuscitate form for when her seizures caused another heart attack as they often did. Matt Figi then found a video of a California boy who successfully treated Dravet with cannabis. The Figi’s, who voted against medical marijuana, decided to give it a try. They obtained two ounces and gave it to Charlotte in small doses. After the first dose the seizures stopped for a full seven days. The Figi’s then found the Stanly brothers who were large marijuana growers and dispensary owners. These brothers had a strain of marijuana with low THC and high CBD that they did not know what to do with. After meeting with Charlotte they agreed to help her cause and named their strand of cannabis after Charlotte and started the Realm of Caring Foundation. This no-profit organization provided cheap cannabis for people who can’t afford it. Charlotte is now eight years old and only has two or three seizures a month usually in her sleep and is able to walk, talk, and even ride a bicycle. Hopefully this story will help people form an opinion of whether or not medical cannabis is ethical. 

The marijuana strain Charlotte and others use to help their symptoms has been named after her. It's called Charlotte's Web.
"I literally see Charlotte's brain making connections that haven't been made in years," Matt Figi said of his daughter. "I want other people, other parents, to know that this is a viable option.",


  1. How can it be anything but ethical to treat such a child as Charlotte with a medication that has such dramatic results? If the resistance is due to recreational connotations, then let's rebrand: call it anything but cannabis. And show those before/after pics.

  2. I think this is great that you have Charlotte in here to display the effects of medical marijuana. So many people refuse to research and would prefer to stay ignorant of remedies like this. And they especially do not care until it becomes personal like Charlotte's family here. People need to understand that they can't govern how somebody takes care of themselves and others if the remedy works.