Cannabidiol in the Treatment of Anxiety: A Large Case Series
Scott Shannon, M.D., ABIHM
Cannabis plants have been used to treat various ailments for thousands of years. Cannabinoids are one important group of molecules discovered within the cannabis plant. Marijuana contains more than 60 different cannabinoids. In addition to these substances occurring in the plant kingdom, the human body and a wide range of animals produce cannabinoids known as endocannabinoids. Throughout the body and brain are cannabinoid receptors that recognize and respond to endogenous cannabinoids. The system exists to maintain homeostasis in the body by regulating a variety of physiological processes, including memory, mood, appetite and the sensation of pain. Recent research points to a complementary relationship between cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC can promote anxiety and psychotic features. In research models CBD creates nearly the opposite pattern in the human brain. A few recent studies have pointed to a benefit for CBD in treating anxiety, particularly social anxiety. Over the last two years our clinic, Wholeness Center, has prescribed CBD oil for over 200 different psychiatric patients. This presentation will focus on a review of the existing data and our large case series in the treatment of anxiety. This presentation will review the data from a case series of 136 patients (adults, adolescents and children). Anxiety demonstrated a robust and sustained fall from baseline. CBD may be a useful tool for chronic anxiety.
Scott Shannon, M.D., ABIHM, has been involved in holistic medicine since he joined the American Holistic Medical Association in 1978. Scott has elaborated a holistic and integrative perspective in psychiatry for over two decades. He published the first textbook for this field in 2001. Scott is a past President of the AHMA and a past President of the ABIHM. He was a founding Board member for the Academy of Integrative Health and Medicine and the American Board of Integrative Medicine.
Scott also teaches as an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Colorado-Children’s Hospital in Denver. In 2010 he founded the country’s largest and most comprehensive integrative mental health clinic, Wholeness Center, in Fort Collins. Norton published his latest textbook for professionals, Mental Health for the Whole Child in 2013 and his book for parents, Parenting the Whole Child in 2014. His current passion is training psychiatrists in the new paradigm of mental health.