The medical use of the cannabis plant dates back to ancient times. Around the world—from China to India to Egypt—it’s been used for insomnia, headaches, gastrointestinal disorders, labor pain, menstrual pain, nerve pain, and more.
In the United States, cannabis was widely available in over-the-counter remedies until 1937. It fact, it was listed in the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) way back in 1850, only to be dropped in 1942. But, a mere half century later, it resurfaced again when California became the first state to legalize the medical use of cannabis in 1996, picking up where history left off.
Today, US laws are leaning more and more in favor of the medical use of cannabis, and we’re once again witnessing the medical potential of the chemicals derived from cannabis, especially CBD.
In 2018, the FDA for the first time approved a pharmaceutical drug that contains a cannabinoid—CBD—derived from cannabis. This pharmaceutical drug goes by the trade name Epidiolex, and the generic name is—yup, you guessed it—cannabidiol (CBD). It’s an oral solution approved for the treatment of seizures associated with two rare and severe forms of epilepsy, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome.
The approval of Epidiolex marks an important step forward in medicine. It legitimizes CBD within the medical community, while also paving the way for more research related to cannabinoids.