The use of pharmaceutical cannabidiol (CBD) in Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome is beneficial both in terms of seizure reduction and improvements in patients’ quality of life, according to a new Italian study published in the journal Expert Opinion on Pharmacotherapy.

However, the authors warned that more research is necessary to confirm the effects of the treatment on quality of life as well as the best strategy to switch to pharmaceutical cannabidiol from a galenic formulation.

Read more about the etiology of Lennox-Gastaut syndrome

The use of galenic formulations of CBD versus pharmaceutical CBD is not clearly regulated in Italy.

To share and disseminate the opinions of experts on the use and administration of pharmaceutical CBD in patients with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome, a team of researchers led by Nicola Specchio MD, PhD, of Bambino Gesù Children’s Hospital in Rome, Italy used a nominal group technique that involved 8 adult and pediatric neurologists in Italy. 

The team used 2 consecutive questionnaires to gather the responses of the neurologists, which  were then discussed in a final meeting.

“The use of a pharmaceutical CBD is considered preferable to galenic formulations, in terms of reproducibility, safety, and control of the delivered dose,” was the conclusion of the final discussion.

Both Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome are rare epilepsies, which are challenging to treat.

The pharmaceutical CBD Epidyolex is approved for the treatment of these 2 epilepsies both by the US Food and Drug Administration and the European Medicines Agency.

A nominal group technique is defined as a structured method to allow group brainstorming. It encourages contributions from everyone in the group and facilitates a quick agreement on the relative importance of issues, problems, or solutions. 


Bonanni P, Ragona F, Fusco C, et al. Cannabidiol use in patients with Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome: experts’ opinions using a nominal group technique (NGT) approach. Expert Opin Pharmacother. Published online April 6, 2023. doi:10.1080/14656566.2023.2187697