WEST TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) – Indiana lawmakers made a huge move toward approving what some are calling a medical miracle.
Just days ago, the house and senate each approved separate bills allowing treatment of severe epilepsy with a marijuana-derived oil.
The bill would allow the use of cannabidiol oil or CBD.
The medicine contains virtually no THC, so it can’t get patients high.
It can dramatically lessen seizures.
This is a huge step for conservative Indiana.
The Hoosier state is one of the last states in the country to allow marijuana extract.
Next week, the house and senate will swap their bills.
The hope is one will finally be agreed upon, making CBD legal by April.
One of the best examples of how this medicine can change lives is right here in our backyard.
You may remember Brice Taylor of West Terre Haute.
We first introduced you to him two years ago.
A young boy trapped in seizures all day long.
The home video is hard to watch and it was the nightmare the Taylor’s endured all day…every day.
Brice Taylor’s brain, locked in an epileptic seizure, up to 100 times a day.
A young mind trapped in a virtual prison.
Never given the chance to heal, learn and live a normal life.
When we first did this story, Brice was 10-years-old.
Thanks to endless seizures, he was more like four or five mentally.
His ability to converse, write, or retain information essentially was non-existent.
Today, Brice is 13.
He’s happy, independent, and most importantly…seizure free.
“Everything’s changed with him and all for the better. He’s still not up to 13-year-old level cognitively…but he’s gaining. His writing is better, his reading is better, retaining information is better,” Brice’s mom told us.
Brice’s life has turned around thanks to this.
As part of an FDA-approved study.
Brice takes two daily doses of CBD oil.
It’s a natural oil extracted from the marijuana plant.
Scientists believe the CBD in the treatment quiets the electrical activity in the brain that causes seizures.
Brice’s mother Andi says from the very first dose of CBD he took more than two years ago…he went from 70 to 100 seizures a day to absolutely none.
“I have living proof this does work! He loves his independence, he want’s to do things, order his own food at the restaurants, where before he couldn’t. He started riding a bike here recently which he hadn’t done since before the seizures,” Andi said.
The study Brice is involved in has been extended.
He’ll continue to get oral medication indefinitely.
But, there are many other children in Indiana needing the life changing drug.
It’s legal in many states, including Illinois.
Indiana is one step closer to allowing it to be available in pharmacies here.
It’s a move Andi Taylor hopes will not only help other children like Brice, but also open minds to all medicinal uses.
“As soon as you say marijuana, people shut down and don’t want to talk about it. And it’s a medicine. It’s not just a drug for people to get high. It’s helping people and it saved his life…I guarantee it,” Andi said.
Now, for the first time…the Taylor’s are able to look ahead to a normal future for Brice.