Green River Star -

By David Martin
Editor 

Legislator wants eased CBD laws

 

January 17, 2018



A Green River legislator seeks to ease restrictions for patients to legally purchase CBD, an oil extract from hemp plants its proponents claim can be used to treat a variety of medical problems.

Stan Blake, D-Green River, plans to submit a bill to the Wyoming House of Representatives that would allow for any physician to prescribe CBD, also known as Cannabidoil, for use in medical treatment. Currently, the law only allows for a neurologist to recommend CBD. Blake’s bill, which is in draft form, would also allow for parents to seek CBD treatment for adult dependents, as well as open CBD treatments to any disorder a physician believes would be improved through the oil, not just epilepsy and other seizure disorders. Blake said the reason he wants to ease CBD regulations is because it is quickly becoming a popular treatment amongst some Wyoming residents, some of whom could find themselves on the wrong side of the law.

“There are people using it right now and they shouldn’t be made criminals for wanting to better their lives,” Blake said.

CBD oils are considered by the Drug Enforcement Agency as Schedule 1 drugs, which with marijuana, LSA and heroin are considered “as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse,” according to the DEA’s website. However, a June 24, 2015, presentation published on the National Institute on Drug Abuse’s website claims there may be some medicinal benefits to CBD. The presentation, titled “Cannabidiol: Barriers to Research and Potential Medical Benefits,” claims few small-scale studies have been enacted to test the oil’s effectiveness on epilepsy, with three of the four trials showing positive results. Despite those reports, the presentation claims there were design defects in the trials and claims there is a need for “a series of properly designed, high quality and adequately powered trials.” The presentation further addresses other reported benefits of CBD, mentioning studies supporting claims that drugs containing CBD have been shown to reduce the severity of spasticity in patients with multiple sclerosis and improve quality of life scores for patients with Parkinson’s Disease. The presentation also sites preliminary studies underway examining CBD’s effects on cancer tumors and its efficiency for treating substance abuse disorders.

The safety of CBD was also highlighted in the presentation, with alternations in thinking and perception caused by THC, the chemical associated with marijuana’s effects, not present in CBD usage.

“A review of 25 studies on the safety and efficacy of CBD did not identify significant side effects across a wide range of dosages, including acute and chronic dose regimens, using various modes of administration,” according to the presentation. The NIDA does recommend further study into its effects however.

During the past few years, several states have enacted their own laws legalizing medicinal or recreational use of marijuana despite objections from the federal government. Blake said a number of Wyoming residents have claimed to sell oils during Facebook iterations with him, telling him it’s completely legal. However, because Wyoming follows the DEA guidelines on drug usage, Blake said any sales of the oil within the state are illegal.

For Blake, the issue is only motivated by the medicinal side of the argument and believes CBD can legitimately be used in medical treatment.

When the initial bill to allowing CBD prescriptions was debated in the legislature, Blake said he and other representatives listened to testimony from people supporting CBD’s medical uses and was convinced of its medicinal properties.

“I believe in state’s rights and if someone wants to try CBD oil, they should be able to,” Blake said.

 

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