CBD as a treatment for epidermolysis bullosa

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Epidermolysis Bullosa is a rare skin disease. Also called "onion skin", it is characterized by the ease with which the skin and mucous membranes separate from adjacent tissues in the face of slight trauma.

The skin is as fragile as the wings of a butterfly and children suffering from this disease are known as "butterfly children". Topical CBD has proven its effectiveness as a treatment for Epidermolysis bullosa, reducing pain and itching and the formation of the blistering characteristics of this disease.

Read also: Can CBD Be Mixed with Antidepressants?

What is Epidermolysis Bullosa?

EB is an inherited skin disease characterized by skin fragility. The disease can also manifest itself in other organs. Children born with Epidermolysis bullosa may have complex lifelong medical needs that may require the combined intervention of many medical specialties.

EB is caused by a defect in the anchoring of proteins between the epidermis and dermis and predisposes to the formation of blisters and skin lesions that leave scars. It can also occur inside the mouth and makes swallowing difficult, complicating feeding.

It usually manifests in children, although it can remain dormant until adolescence or adulthood.

The signs and symptoms of Epidermolysis bullosa would be as follows, among others

  • Fragile skin blisters easily, especially on hands and feet, or in areas of rubbing.
  • Nails that are thick or do not form
  • Blisters on the inside of the mouth and throat
  • Thickening of the skin on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet
  • Blisters on the scalp that leave scars and hair loss
  • Very thin skin
  • Small white bumps on the skin or pimples
  • Dental problems such as cavities due to malformed tooth enamel
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Itching and pain in the skin

Blisters on the skin may not appear until the child begins to walk or an older child does not have intense physical activities that cause more rubbing on the feet.

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CBD as a treatment for Epidermolysis bullosa

According to the study Combined tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol to treat pain in epidermolysis bullosa: a report of three cases published in the British Journal of Dermatology, oral use of cannabinoids could help in pain management and the urgent need to scratch.

CBD is one of the main cannabinoids in the cannabis plant, along with THC. CBD has no psychotropic effects and thanks to its analgesic and calming properties has become very popular among people affected by chronic pain, anxiety, or sleep disorders, allowing to reduce or eliminate drugs derived from opioids.

Read also: How do CBD and THC help cancer patients?

Topical CBD for children with Epidermolysis bullosa

In 2018, topical CBD was tested in three children affected by EB between 6 months and 10 years of age. One of the children was able to stop taking oral opioid analgesics and in all three cases, there was faster wound healing, improved pain, and a lower propensity to blister.

Read also: Medical research on medical cannabis

CBD and THC combined orally for Epidermolysis bullosa in adults

The same benefits that have been observed in pediatrics have been given in studies conducted in adults, achieving the reduction of analgesics and itching.

Research to date shows the potential of cannabinoids to reduce itching and skin pain produced by epidermolysis bullosa. However, more research is needed to finalize the specific doses and method of administration so that medical cannabis can be prescribed as a treatment for EB on a widespread basis.

CBD Edibles applied to the skin improve many diseases such as acne, psoriasis, or atopic dermatitis and it seems that also Epidermolysis bullosa. Topically applied CBD oil has no side effects and as you may have read, it has been administered even to children.