- Cole Quarrell, 6, suffers drug-resistant epilepsy
- Epidiolex, a CBD0only medication, initially helped Cole, but his condition quickly deteriorated
- Lisa, his mother, has launched a fresh appeal to get her son whole-plant medical cannabis
- Over 50 brave people and companies have offered to provide it for free, but Lisa wants to go through official channels for Cole’s safety
A Scottish mother has launched a fresh appeal to get her severely epileptic son legal access to whole-plant medical cannabis.
Cole Thomson, 6, was diagnosed early in life with intractable focal epilepsy, suffering up to 10 life-threatening seizures a day, leaving him paralysed and unable to speak.
His mother, Lisa, tirelessly campaigned to get her son legal access to medical cannabis, garnering the support of 14,000 for her petition pleading the Scottish government to provide her son with a prescription for medical cannabis.
The brave mother won her fight. Her prize: a legal prescription for Epidiolex, a CBD-based medicine.
Unfortunately, Cole, like so many young children with drug-resistant epilepsy, needs both CBD and THC (whole plant medical cannabis). The boy’s condition deteriorated to the point where he was hospitalised.
Cole is now recovering well thanks to the anti-seizure drug Phenytoin.
However, due to the pharmaceutical drug’s extreme side-effects (which include: tremors, mood swings, vomiting, headaches, gum disease, and loss of equilibrium), Phenytoin is only a short-term solution. Cole cannot use the medication for more than three months at a time, he urgently needs legal access to whole plant medical cannabis.
Lisa explained the damage the rescue drug was doing to her son in an interview with The Daily Record:
“The rescue med is hammering his brain.
“He is getting better but it’s not sustainable. His blood levels need checking every couple of days because it can become toxic in the body very quickly.
“And everything has to be regulated; he must eat and sleep at a certain time.”
Cole and Lisa’s inspiring fight has attracted a beautiful response from the UK cannabis community, over 50 individuals, cannabis collectives and even an English hemp company, have offered the brave boy free medical cannabis.
Lisa humbly had to reject the offers, as she is not prepared to jeopardise her son’s safety by proceeding without the support of the Government; Cole needs to be monitored and treated by trained medical professionals.
“The only people left suffering are our children while we watch.”
– Lisa Quarrell, Mother & Medical Cannabis Warrior
Purchasing medical cannabis through a private prescription would cost up to £378 per bottle, which would only last between 5-10 days (not to mention to additional import and licensing charges).
This is not sustainable for the family, nor would it be for the majority of British families. Lisa would need to pay up to £20,000 per year just to give Cole a fighting chance for a better life, one not consumed by seizures and hospital trips.
Lisa’s appeal to the Scottish authorities is based on her strong belief that whole plant medical cannabis holds the key to Cole’s future:
“We need to get him on whole plant now – it turned his life around in three days.
“A private clinic in Holland is still an option, but I’m hoping in the next week or two I’ll get authorisation for a private prescription. Only three have been issued on the NHS, and none of them were in Scotland.
“So many MPs stood up for the families fighting for access to whole plant medical cannabis, I beg of you to all come together to help us receive private prescriptions and assist funding them.
“Please cover these costs until the Secretary of State fixes the mess we are all in through no fault of our own.
“The only people left suffering are our children while we watch”.
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