Assessment of hemp oil-based cannabidiol use in a community-based pharmacy setting
Background: The Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018 legalized the commercial use of hemp-based products, including cannabidiol (CBD). However, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not currently regulate the commercial sale of hemp oil-based CBD, and there is no FDA-approved indication for its nonprescription formulations despite the growing demand for, and use of, hemp oil-based CBD.
Objectives: Characterize the use of hemp oil-based CBD, including brands, formulations, and reasons for use, in a community pharmacy setting and identify the perceived barriers related to the use of hemp oil-based CBD.
Methods: A pretested 17-question survey was distributed at the point of care at 2 community pharmacy locations and at hemp oil-based CBD education presentations over a 3-month period. The survey consisted of multiple-choice, open-ended, and select-all-that-apply questions, which were analyzed using univariate and bivariate analyses.
Results: A total of 101 participants completed the survey: 38 were CBD-naive, and 63 were CBD-exposed. Most of the participants were women (79%) and Caucasian (81.6%), with an average age of 59 years (SD 17.26). In the CBD-naive group, the most commonly stated barrier to using hemp oil-based CBD was not enough information about the product. Among the participants who had used or were using at least 1 CBD product, the most commonly used dosage form was sublingual, followed by topical: 46 (46/63 [73%]) and 34 (34/63 [54%]) participants, respectively. Thirty-eight participants used hemp oil-based CBD for pain, 24 participants for sleep, and 17 participants for anxiety. Of these, 62% of the participants informed a health care provider that they were using a hemp oil-based CBD product.
Conclusion: The participants were using different brands and formulations of hemp oil-based CBD for multiple reasons. The greatest barrier to trying CBD was limited education, which may suggest a need for community education about hemp oil-based CBD products.