Viewpoint: Federal marijuana regulations defy ‘common sense’, hindering autism and epilepsy research

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Image credit: Medical Pot

A few years ago, I began to see children in my practice who seemingly responded to marijuana-derived extracts. And as a result, I grew cautiously optimistic that these extracts might be good treatments for the condition.

As a devout believer in evidence-based medicine, I still needed experimental data that could distinguish bona fide effectiveness from a deceptive impression of benefit — a placebo effect.

But my desire to study marijuana ran headlong into a seemingly immovable obstacle: the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). The agency’s illogical and stubborn stance makes it all but impossible for scientists to study cannabidiol. I persevered and eventually succeeded in launching a study, but no doubt many others give up, robbing us of valuable insight into marijuana’s potential benefits.

Related article:  Viewpoint: Autism research is leaving girls behind

Although medical marijuana is legal in 31 states and recreational marijuana in 9, the federal government continues to consider marijuana a ‘Schedule 1 controlled substance,’ putting it in a category of drugs, along with heroin and LSD, considered to have no medical value and a high potential for abuse.

People with these conditions are potentially missing out — and why? The more I learned about the federal stance toward marijuana, the clearer it became that it is medically uninformed and often defies common sense.

Read full, original post: Federal chokehold on marijuana stymies studies on epilepsy, autism

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