The Truth About Cannabidiol

Cannabidiol , or CBD, is a chemical in the cannabis plant. It’s been advertised as a natural cure for everything from insomnia to anxiety. Products with CBD are everywhere, including vape pens, pills, and dog treats. But what’s the truth about this alleged miracle substance?

A growing body of preclinical and clinical evidence suggests that hemp and CBD oils may help with a number of symptoms. But care must be taken in directing patients to these products. They are little regulated and often inaccurately labeled in terms of tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol content.

In the US, the Food and Drug Administration has approved a purified form of CBD — called Epidiolex — for the treatment of seizures associated with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome or Dravet syndrome in children 1 year of age and older. But the FDA does not yet have an approval process for the use of cannabis-derived products for most other conditions.

The Health Benefits of Cannabidiol (CBD): Exploring Its Potential Uses

The FDA continues to monitor safety signals related to the use of cannabis and cannabis-derived products. Consumers and health care providers can report serious adverse events to the FDA through MedWatch. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) provides research-grade cannabis for scientific study. Researchers conduct studies at a secure facility to determine whether the product is safe and effective for its intended therapeutic indication. If results are positive, the sponsor can file an Investigational New Drug (IND) application with the FDA for formal approval. The FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) evaluates applications based on scientific data, public health benefit, and risk-benefit.

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