The discovery of cannabis as a treatment for epilepsy is merely a re- discovery!!
An Irish man Dr. William Brooke O’ Shaunessy whom is credited with bringing cannabis into western medicine. In 1822 O’ Shaunessy graduated in 1829 with a medical doctorate from the university of Edinburgh. In 1831 at the young age of 22 he began working on cholera and his early work led to the development of intravenous fluid and introduction of electrolyte – replacement therapy.
In 1833 he moved to Calcutta India to work for the British East India tea company, it was during his time there he developed new cannabinoid extraction techniques which he used in preparations to treat patients suffering from cholera, tetanus, analgesia and childhood epilepsy.
In his paper “ On the preparations of the Indian Hemp or Ghunja” published in the provincial medical journal London on 4th feb 1843 he relates to a case of a baby just over a month old whom he administered a ethanol cannabis based tincture. “Case of infantile convulsions 1843”
In India he initially studied botanical pharmacology and chemistry, publishing his first paper on medical cannabis in 1839.