Missouri OKs Hemp CBD For Rare Form of Epilepsy

July 15, 2014

Missouri children with epileptic seizures can now use hemp CBD extracts when other treatments don't work.

Distinguishing between hemp oil that is and isn’t rich in cannabidiol (CBD) just got more important, at least in the state of Missouri. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has signed into law a bill to allow CBD-rich hemp oil as a treatment for children with a rare form of epilepsy.

In cases ofintractable epilepsy, where a patient’s frequent seizures cannot be controlled by conventional treatment, CBD extracts have shown positive results in clinical trials. Families intimately tied to this condition are apparently already aware of the potential success with hemp CBD extracts, as the St. Louis Post-Dispatch mentions reports of Missouri families that have already relocated to Colorado, where hemp CBD products are more readily available due to state regulations.

Because hemp oil is already available in culinary and cosmetic forms meant for non-medical consumption, Missouri intends to regulate CBD-rich hemp in an entirely unique manner. The Post-Dispatch says that only two non-profit companies will be licensed to grow hemp plants intended for this purpose and distribute their oils, and a patient can only receive such products if a neurologist confirms the patient has already tried at least three other treatments.

Unlike culinary hemp oil, which is usually sourced from pressed hemp seeds, CBD-rich oil is best obtained from hemp flowers and stalks. CBD-rich oils may contain more chlorophyll than culinary hemp oil, but they may be lower in essential fatty acids.

In the United States, CBD-rich hemp is already available in the form of imported supplements, and existing federal and state regulations do not concern presence of CBD in any type of hemp oil, so Missouri’s strict enforcement will represent a legal gray area in commerce. Under federal and state laws, all hemp products (both imports and future domestic products) must still contain less than 0.3% THC.

Photo ©iStockphoto.com/pashabo

 

Robby Gardner

Associate Editor

Nutritional Outlook magazine

robby.gardner@ubm.com

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