While cannabis has been consumed for thousands of years, the medical-legal landscape surrounding its use has dramatically evolved over the past decades. Patients are turning to cannabis as a therapeutic option for several medical conditions. Given the surge in interest over the past decades there exists a major gap in the literature with respect to understanding the products that are currently being consumed by patients. The current perspective highlights the lack of relevance within the current literature towards understanding the medical chemistry of the products being consumed. The cannabis industry must rigorously invest into understanding what people are consuming from a chemical composition standpoint. This will inform what compounds in addition to Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol may be producing physiologic/therapeutic effects from plant based extracts. Only through real-world evidence and a formalized, granular data collection process within which we know the chemical inputs for patients already using or beginning to use medical cannabis, we can come closer to the ability to provide targeted clinical decision making and design future appropriate randomized controlled trials.
Keywords: cannabidiol; cannabis; real world evidence; Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol.