Research Roundup

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Debbie Rigby rounds up the latest in research news 

Cannabidiol for treating drug-resistant epilepsy in children

In this small trial of 39 children in NSW with drug-resistant epilepsy and uncountable daily seizures, cannabidiol as an adjunct treatment had some subjective benefit for overall health, with a manageable adverse event profile. Children received cannabidiol as an adjunct anti-epileptic drug, titrated to a maximum of 25 mg/kg/day, for up to 12 weeks. Monitoring changes in liver function and awareness of potential drug interactions is essential.

Med J Aust. Published online: 13 August 2018

Research letter

Cannabis as Medicine Survey



Therapeutic Use of medicinal cannabis in difficult to manage epilepsy

This review focuses mainly on cannabidiol (CBD), the most researched compound of the cannabis sativa derivatives, in the management of intractable epilepsy. Approximately 33% of adults and 20% of children with epilepsy meet the definition of intractable epilepsy. Cannabidiol has modest efficacy and is appropriate for children with severe epilepsy with due attention to important adverse effects and potential drug interactions. CBD must be considered a third-line agent because of the comparatively low patient-years of use in terms or exposure and adverse events, and the presence of well-established first and second line agents.

British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology 2018.


Association of Multivitamin and Mineral Supplementation and Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

A systematic review and meta-analysis of 18 studies has concluded there is no association between multivitamin/mineral supplements and CVD or CHD mortality, stroke mortality or stroke incidence. Multivitamin/mineral supplements appeared to be associated with a lower risk of CHD incidence; however this association did not remain significant in the pooled subgroup analysis of randomized controlled trials.

Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes. 2018;11:e004224.


Errors in the Use of Inhalers by Health Care Professionals

A systematic review of 55 studies involving 6,304 healthcare professionals demonstrated inadequate knowledge of the proper use of inhalers. Overall inhaler technique was considered correct in 15.5% of cases, decreasing over time from 20.5% n 1975-1995 to 10.8% during 1996-2014. The most common errors in the use of pMDIs were as follows: not breathing out completely before inhalation, lack of coordination and post-inhalation breath-hold. The most common errors using DPI were deficient preparation, not breathing out completely before inhalation, and no breath-hold.

Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice 2018;6(3):987-95.

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