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10 November 2017, 03:17 | Lena Norman
The Real Risk of Buying Medical Marijuana Online
Buyer beware. almost 75 percent of CBDmarijuana extracts sold online are mislabeled, with numerous products containing little to none of the active ingredient, according to a study helmed by a University of Pennsylvania researcher.
A new study published this week in JAMA found that almost 70 percent of all cannabidiol (CBD) products sold online are either over or under labeled, causing potential serious harm to its consumers.
A new study by a Penn Medicine researcher, published this week in JAMA, found that almost 70 percent of all cannabidiol products sold online are either over or under labeled, causing potential serious harm to its consumers. CBD products are widely available despite a federal prohibition on their use.
"There are now no standards for producing, testing or labeling these [cannabidiol] oils", study lead author Marcel Bonn-Miller, an adjunct assistant professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, said in a statement. Products considered to be "accurately labeled" contained 90 to 110 percent of the labeled value of CBD.
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Now that 29 states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana, the online presence of extracts containing CBD has grown significantly because CBD has shown great potential for treating a variety of conditions, including pain, anxiety, and epilepsy. The researchers also point out that with the range of inconsistencies, in the past, FDA-regulated drugs showing the same degree of inconsistencies was enough to prompt the agency to issue warnings to drug makers.
"Selling these oils without oversight, there is no way to know what is actually in the bottle", said Dr. Bonn-Miller. Another 26 percent of products purchased were over-labeled, meaning the product contained a lower concentration of CBD than indicated. Only 30 percent of products contained CBD content within 10% of the level listed on the product label. 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. "The biggest implication is that many of these patients may not be getting the proper dosage", Bonn-Miller said.
Dr. Bonn-Miller's study report, "Labeling Accuracy of Cannabidiol Extracts Sold Online", was published this week in JAMA. "Reaching compliance with existing standards for cannabis-products could help address this issue".
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