The ABC’s of CBD in your pharmacy….will this help my business??

Jonathan Jacobs
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CBD oil and its various forms of dispersement and ingestion seem to be everywhere. Will this help your pharmacy’s bottom line?

The fact that you’ve begun reading this in the first place means that you are intrigued.  CBD oil and it’s sale to the general public does seem to be everywhere from card stores to gas stations the signs are there “CBD for Sale”! Why shouldn’t you be in on it? You already provide an essential service in an essential business.  Your community all knows and views their local Pharmacy and you and your staff pharmacists as one of their most trusted professional relationships.  The general public is for the most part completely ignorant to the real benefits and usefulness of CBD other than what they’ve ‘heard’ through the grapevine.  Lets dig in a bit to cover some basic facts then we’ll get to the point of if selling CBD in your store will actually help your bottom line.


How is cannabidiol different from marijuana?

CBD stands for cannabidiol. It is the second most prevalent of the active ingredients of cannabis (marijuana). While CBD is an essential component of medical marijuana, it is derived directly from the hemp plant, which is a cousin of the marijuana plant. While CBD is a component of marijuana (one of hundreds), by itself it does not cause a “high.” According to a report from the World Health Organization, “In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential…. To date, there is no evidence of public health related problems associated with the use of pure CBD.”


Is cannabidiol legal?

CBD is readily obtainable in most parts of the United States, though its exact legal status is in flux. All 50 states have laws legalizing CBD with varying degrees of restriction, and while the federal government still considers CBD in the same class as marijuana, it doesn’t habitually enforce against it. In December 2015, the FDA eased the regulatory requirements to allow researchers to conduct CBD trials. Currently, many people obtain CBD online without a medical cannabis license. The government’s position on CBD is confusing, and depends in part on whether the CBD comes from hemp or marijuana. The legality of CBD is expected to change, as there is currently bipartisan consensus in Congress to make the hemp crop legal which would, for all intents and purposes, make CBD difficult to prohibit. Current political platforms dictate that President Trump is not willing to lift Marijuana as a class one narcotic. Vice President Joe Biden is in favor of legalizing Marijuana and CBD as well.  Truth be told CBD is not a cure for any one condition though it is gaining traction to be an approved ‘treatment’ for a variety of conditions.


Benefits of using CBD 

CBD has been touted for a wide variety of health issues, but the strongest scientific evidence is for its effectiveness in treating some of the cruelest childhood epilepsy syndromes, such as Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS), which typically don’t respond to antiseizure medications. In numerous studies, CBD was able to reduce the number of seizures, and in some cases it was able to stop them altogether. Videos of the effects of CBD on these children and their seizures are readily available on the Internet for viewing, and they are quite striking. Recently the FDA approved the first ever cannabis-derived medicine for these conditions, Epidiolex, which contains CBD. However CBD is thought to treat many ‘symptoms’ of numerous medical conditions such as anxiety, pain, nausea, arthritis, and AD/HD just to name a few.  At present there have been numerous studies to verify its usefulness in treating and relieving symptoms of various medical conditions.

CBD is commonly used to address anxiety, and for patients who suffer through the misery of insomnia, studies suggest that CBD may help with both falling asleep and staying asleep.

CBD may offer an option for treating different types of chronic pain. A study from the European Journal of Pain showed, using an animal model, CBD applied on the skin could help lower pain and inflammation due to arthritis. Another study demonstrated the mechanism by which CBD inhibits inflammatory and neuropathic pain, two of the most difficult types of chronic pain to treat. More study in humans is needed in this area to substantiate the claims of CBD proponents about pain control.

Side effects of using CBD

Side effects of CBD include nausea, fatigue and irritability. CBD can increase the level in your blood of the blood thinner coumadin, and it can raise levels of certain other medications in your blood by the exact same mechanism that grapefruit juice does. A significant safety concern with CBD is that it is primarily marketed and sold as a supplement, not a medication. There is of course past precedent information that is currently in use to determine proper dosage amounts. CBD oil can certainly have a significant impact on your patients current medications To learn more on this please go here or see the below listed link. *Important Note when discussing CBD is the enzyme CPY450 which almost acts as an inhibitor for medication ingestion and processing much like grapefruit warnings for certain meds*  More than 85 drugs interact with grapefruit and some closely related citrus juices — like Seville oranges, pomelos, and tangelos. That’s because chemicals in grapefruit known as furanocoumarins inhibit CYP3A4, in a similar fashion as CBD. The result is a slowed metabolization of medications.  If you plan to sell CBD through the pharmacy remember this very important warning.

Remember that most PMS (Pharmacy Mangement Systems) DO NOT take into account CBD interactions with their current Drug Databases. Point of Care Systems handles this all smoothly to schedule a demo to discuss this and see more please click here. Currently, the FDA does not regulate the safety and purity of dietary supplements. So you cannot know for sure that the product you buy has active ingredients at the dose listed on the label. In addition, the product may contain other (unknown) elements. We also don’t know the most effective therapeutic dose of CBD for any particular medical conditions.

The bottom line on cannabidiol sales

Some CBD manufacturers have come under government scrutiny for wild, indefensible claims, such that CBD is a cure-all for cancer, which it is not. We need more research but CBD may be prove to be an option for managing anxiety, insomnia, and chronic pain. Without sufficient high-quality evidence in human studies we can’t pinpoint effective doses, and because CBD currently is mostly available as an unregulated supplement, it’s difficult to know exactly what you are getting or selling. Now if you decide to try and sell CBD, talk with local doctors — if for no other reason than to get a feel from your largest prescription writers how and where they stand on the topic.

Remember you are a trusted professional resource to many of your patients. Get your education on!  Study up on CBD and all there is to know because there is a lot.  Communicate with your customers about possibly selling CBD and get their feedback, most will be excited you are now offering it because they are intrigued as well.  If you put on an after hours seminar with educational handouts or collect emails and send this out electronically during times of Covid-19 you’ll find a very quick response and correseponding sales. Because you are a trusted resource the current cutomers you have will increase their spending in your store and stay loyal on a whole other level!  We will produce more information on this ever changing topic soon!


Be sure to also review the additional resources we’ve put together for these rapidly changing times and work landscape during this Coronavirus crisis:


Some Business Resources In The Time Of Covid-19 – Part I

Point of Sale Success Part 5 : Understanding the “Ins and Outs” of Inventory Receiving

Isn’t it Time for Pharmacists to Prescribe? -Part I

Top Ten CBD Gummies

CBD Can Change the Way Your Body Processes Medication click here

CBD Dosage: Figuring out How Much to Take click here

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