FDA cracks down on unverified marijuana cancer cures

The FDA is moving to crack down on unsubstantiated claims involving more than 25 products containing cannabidiol (CBD), that aver they can “cure” breast cancer, etc., as well as Alzheimer’s by making diseased cells literally “ commit ‘suicide’ without killing healthy ones.” These include a variety of syrups, teas, capsules, creams, lotions, and drops. Companies targeted by the agency for violating health safety protocols by promoting these items through online stores and social media include Greenroads Health, Natural Alchemist, That’s Natural! Marketing and Consulting, and Stanley Brothers Social Enterprises LLC.

While the products manufactured by the above have not (to date) been subject to FDA review as part of the drug approval process, the government states that “selling them with unsubstantiated therapeutic claims is not only a violation of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, but cab also put patients’ lives at risk since there is no way of determining for a fact whether they are safe or effective. Among the biggest questions include proper dosage, potential side effects, and possible interactions with other drugs. As a result, the Food and Drug Administration has sent each of these companies warning letters demanding that they correct the violations immediately, or face legal action, including injunction and product seizure.

The move is part of the federal government’s continuing program to protect consumers from deceptive practices that could put them in peril, including false advertising that might deter patients from seeking proven treatments and therapies for life-threatening diseases.

According to Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D. while the agency recognizes the need to continue to develop new uses for medicinal marijuana for a variety of health issues, they “have an obligation to provide caregivers and patients with the confidence that drugs making cancer treatment claims have been carefully evaluated for safety, efficacy, and quality, and are monitored by the FDA once they’re on the market.

Currently approved uses for medicinal marijuana (available at licensed dispensaries throughout the US) include treating: glaucoma, Parkinson’s disease, Tourette’s syndrome, Huntington’s disease. Epilepsy, Some forms of AIDS, neuropathy, nausea, and vomiting caused by chemotherapy, multiple sclerosis, and spinal cord injuries, migraines and pain caused by structural or psycho-physiological disorders such as PTDS, as well as an appetite stimulant for those suffering from malnutrition and starvation, to name a few.

States with approved dispensaries (as of 2016) include Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico. New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Washington and Washington DC.

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