By Benjie Cooper
YouTube: Lucidâ€™s Vlog
5-year-old Murray Gray from Edinburgh, Scotland has been in and out of the Royal Hospital for Sick Children since he was two when doctors diagnosed him with myoclonic astatic epilepsy, a condition which can cause him to have up to twelve severe seizures a day.
Ever since Murrayâ€™s diagnosis, his mother Karen has been fighting for the right to give her son medicinal cannabis to help bring his condition under control. In April, she submitted a petition bearing 170,000 signatures to Downing Street to prompt a debate in parliament on the possibility of bringing medicinal cannabis into the National Healthcare System (NHS).
But Karenâ€™s efforts have finally paid off as young Murray received his first dose of Epidiolex this week. The boy fell during a seizure on Tuesday night, sustaining a cut on his head.
Epidiolex is a strawberry-flavored cannabidiol (CBD) formula manufactured by British-based G.W. Pharmaceuticals. The CBD-based medicine recently made waves in the United States when it gained the approval of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in June.
â€śItâ€™s amazingâ€”itâ€™s a huge relief that Murrayâ€™s now receiving the medicinal cannabis, weâ€™ll just have to hope that it works,â€ť Karen told The Scotsman. â€śWe fought hard to get it, and heâ€™s really happy. Heâ€™s got to take the medicinal cannabis twice a day.â€ť
In a video posted to Murrayâ€™s Page on Facebook, Murray can be seen accepting a plastic syringe of cannabis oil which he dispenses into his mouth, grimacing slightly at first but nodding his head when asked by his mother if it was nice.
â€śHe had his first dose on Wednesday night, and he got his second dose this morning,â€ť she said. â€śWe gave him it in an oral syringe, and it just drops onto his tongue. We donâ€™t know if the Epidiolex will work as heâ€™s only had a small dose, so we just really need to wait and see what happens in the next couple of weeks.â€ť
According to Karen, doctors had been holding off on administering Epidiolex to Murray because his red blood cell count was low. But after his seizure on Tuesday, the physicians realized how much the boy needed the medicine and allowed him to have it.