Monday, 20 November, 2017

Buying Cannabis-Based CBD Medicines Online Is A Gamble

The Real Risk of Buying Medical Marijuana Online Only one-third of marijuana extracts accurately labeled, researchers say
Ben Pena | 10 November, 2017, 03:19

They identified CBD products that were available for online retail purchase and included CBD content on the packaging. The DEA, and the states of Pennsylvania and New Jersey, consider CBD a Schedule 1 substance without a valid medical use.

No studies have shown that taking too much CBD is harmful, says Bonn-Miller, although very little research has been done on doses over 1,500 mg. The study found 43 percent of the products had more cannabidiol and 26 percent had less cannabidiol than was noted on the label. Only 32 percent of the products contained the correct amount of CBD (within the acceptable margin of error) as claimed on the product label.

Bonn-Miller believed that a "systematic evaluation" of the products on the market was needed so consumers would know exactly what they were buying. Product labels were replaced with blinded identifiers within 2 weeks of receipt and sent for analysis of cannabinoid content. One drug company, GW Pharmaceuticals, is now pursuing FDA approval on a CBD-based treatment for children with a rare form of epilepsy - but beyond that, the industry remains unregulated, and Bonn-Miller warns consumers should be wary of what they're purchasing online. Because of the variability between products, it can also be hard for patients to expect consistent results.

"This is a wake up call for the CBD industry to standardize their products", said Dr. Marcu, "CBD product manufacturers need to adopt best practices and accept guidance from AHPA and other groups to improve consistency and safety for consumers".

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"Parents could be giving their kids THC without knowing it", says Bonn-Miller. Some of the products contained THC at levels that might cause children to become intoxicated or trigger a positive result for a drug test.

Dr. Bonn-Miller's study report, "Labeling Accuracy of Cannabidiol Extracts Sold Online", was published this week in JAMA.

Other authors on the paper include Mallory Loflin of the Veterans Affairs San Diego Health Care System, Brian Thomas of RTI International, Jahan Marcu of Americans for Safe Access, Travis Hyke of Palo Alto University, and Ryan Vandrey of Johns Hopkins University.

Penn Medicine is one of the world's leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and excellence in patient care. While medicinal marijuana is legal in several states and the District of Columbia, it remains illegal under federal law. In fiscal year 2016, Penn Medicine provided $393 million to benefit our community.

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