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Covid-19: Charlotte, the 13 years old kid who revolutionised medical cannabis, died

The global movement for the liberalisation of medical cannabis mourns the death of Charlotte Figi.

Covid-19 does not spare anyone and continues its destructive path of contagion and death. Initially it was thought that kids were immune but however it’s not this way anymore. Many cases of prematurely dead kids are making headlines.

On April the 7th 2020 Covid-19 has made another little victim. Charlotte, whose story has revolutionised the medical cannabis, died following complications related to Covid-19.

Charlotte was admitted in the hospital on the 3rd of April following symptoms linked to coronavirus, then she was discharged following an improvement of her conditions. As she got back home, she enjoyed a couple of calm days before the worsening of her health. The worsening led to another immediate hospitalisation, but doctors did not manage to fight against Coronavirus that ended her young life.

The world of medical cannabis, that owes a lot to the experience of this kid, lost the first engine of a liberalisation movement still active to this day.

Charlotte’s story is exemplary, and it started the global movement for the freedom of usage of cannabinol.

Born in 2006 in Colorado Springs in the US, Charlotte quickly showed symptoms of a rare condition that knows no medicines. It was a form of drug-resistant epilepsy known as Dravel Syndrome.

Dravet Syndrome, an illness without cure

Charlotte showed the first symptoms of the Dravet syndrome at the age of just three months. She started having strong epilepsy crises that growing up increased in frequency up to 300 attacks a week. At the age of 5 she was forced to use the wheelchair and to be fed with the probe. The frequency of the attacks did not allow her to have a normal life. She got to a point when she could not talk nor keep eye contact.

Her desperate parents tried all the existing medicines in the market without finding what could actually help the kid.

One day her mother, while researching, found some studies about the usage of medical cannabis to treat epileptic and convulsive crises. At that time Colorado was one of the few states in the US that would allow the usage of medical cannabis as a treatment for seizures.

In a desperate attempt she managed to convince the GP to prescribe the cannabinol to the kid and found two cannabis farmers willing to help her: the Stanley brothers. They were cultivating a new variety of marijuana with a high CBD content and low THC content that is the psychoactive component.

As soon as Charlotte started taking the cannabis oil, her epileptic crises decreased considerably. The kid started playing, walking and they removed the feeding devices too.

Her life expectancy before the treatment with the cannabis oil was of about 8 years. However, her conditions improved so much and quickly that it became a case well know all over the world.

A revolution for medical cannabis

Charlotte’s case, resonating in the news, contributed substantially to the decision of the American government to use cannabinol for medical uses.

A CNN documentary of 2013 showed that the kid was able to walk and play, giving hope to those who have members of their families suffering from the same conditions.

It was a real revolution for medical cannabis! To the point that many families with children having the same condition as Charlotte, moved to Colorado to enjoy the same treatments. Their movement was named “Marijuana refugees”.  A moving collection of their stories has been made by Charlotte’s mum on her Instagram page “Realm of Caring”.

In 2018 the Food and Drug Administration decided to approve a drug made of cannabinol called Epidiolex, to treat convulsions of the Dravet Syndrome. The first ever approved drug for the syndrome.

To date, in the US there are 34 states that have legalised medical cannabis and its use is spreading also in the rest of the world.

From the experience of Charlotte and her family, the “Realm of Caring” association was born, and it helps those in need of taking Cannabinol.

Charlotte’s web

“Realm of Caring” works closely with “Charlotte’s Web”, the society founded from the Stanley brothers. Over time the two brothers have developed and perfected a variety of cannabis suitable to treat convulsive crises. This plant variety took the name from the child who inspired its creation: Charlotte’s Web.

The world rotating around medical cannabis owes a huge thanks you to Charlotte and her family. Their experience allowed to shed light and stimulate the whole sector. The refinement of Charlotte’s Web and its medical use led to an improvement of the life quality of many people.

Research is still continuing, and the usage of cannabinol is proving more and more effective where other drugs are not succeeding.

Covid-19 killed a young person to whom we own a lot. Without her experience and without the patience and energy of her family, the whole marijuana medical sector wouldn’t have got so far.

Little Charlotte, thanks to the new treatment, managed to live her few years in the best possible way.

Rest in peace little Charlotte, we want to remember you smiley and happy, on the slide with your sister.


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