Medical cannabis has changed dramatically over the past decade. 25 states have officially jumped onto the medical bandwagon, and more seem to follow every year. With such momentum, major changes to the industry are inevitable. Here’s how medical cannabis will help us live forever.
1. Medical cannabis will see an innovation boom
Medical cannabis has already come a long way. Five years ago, you couldn’t find CBD products like the Stanley Brothers’ Charlotte’s Web line in dispensaries around the country. Transdermal patches that slowly release THC through the skin couldn’t be found anywhere. Now, we see new products every month. Innovation knows no bounds in the cannabis world.
This innovation boom is coupled with relaxed cannabis laws around the country. More doctors than ever are onboard with cannabis for those with debilitating diseases. Earlier this month, a whopping 90% of pediatric oncologists came out pro-cannabis at an annual conference.
2. More research will be carried out
Though cannabis research has been going on for decades outside of the US, the lack of double-blind, randomized drug trials is a big turn-off for doctors. Evidence of the herb’s medical benefits is immense. But, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a mainstream doctor who feels confident prescribing the plant.
We have already seen some successful US trials with CBD-based drugs from GW Pharmaceuticals. We can only expect more of these kinds of studies as we move forward with cannabis therapeutics.
3. Condition-specific products
As many of you already know, cannabis contains a wide variety of chemical compounds. These compounds are cannabinoids. Studies have found that different medical conditions respond better to certain cannabinoids.
Treatment-resistant epilepsy, for example, may respond well to non-psychoactive CBD. Chemotherapy patients may find more success with THC. Other conditions may respond better to mixtures of cannabinoids, rather than just one type. Further cannabis research will help us target individual medical ailments with more accuracy.
4. More pills
Dosage is a big deal in the medical cannabis world. When people vaporize dried flower or eat an edible, it is very hard to tell how much active medicine they are actually getting. The development of better pre-made cannabis capsules and time-released pills will help solve this problem.
Capsules that release cannabis slowly over time will be extremely helpful to patients. Slow-release products provide a more consistent dose of medication after one-time application. This means that patients will not have to dose up over and over again throughout the day.
5. Greater regulation
All prescription drugs have a drug identification number (DIN). This number allows patients and doctors to identify the specific drug they’re using. It also helps keep track of drug distribution. Medical cannabis does not fall under the regulatory umbrella of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). So, it is difficult to track and maintain quality. As medical cannabis becomes more accepted, major regulatory measures are bound to follow.
When we look into the future, there are always roadblocks and innovations we fail to expect. Yet, there’s no doubt that the cannabis industry is moving fast. What was once hushed-up and underground is now the fastest growing industry in the United States. At this point, all we know for sure is that we’re headed for major change faster than we ever imagined.
What changes do you predict for medical cannabis? Share your thoughts with us on social media or in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you.