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Observed Impact of Long-term Consumption of Oral Cannabidiol on Liver Function in Healthy Adults.
Kaufmann R, Aqua K, Lombardo J, Lee M. Observed Impact of Long-term Consumption of Oral Cannabidiol on Liver Function in Healthy Adults. Cannabis and cannabinoid research. 2021 Dec 16.
Previous studies have suggested that prescribed cannabidiol (CBD) products may cause elevations in liver tests (LT). This study compared the prevalence of elevated LT in an adult population self-administering CBD with the normal and general adult population prevalences. Adults 18-75 years of age across the United States taking CBD orally for a minimum of 30 days were recruited from 12 individual CBD product companies in this decentralized, observational study and sent their standard CBD regimen from the company of their choice. An app-based, 21CFR Part 11 decentralized clinical study platform (ValidCare Study) was used to securely automate consent inclusion/exclusion criteria and collect all the data for this study, including: demographic information, medical history, reasons for taking, dosage, current medications dosage, adverse effects, and efficacy. At the end of 30 days, LTs were obtained. Follow-up LTs were offered to all individuals with elevated alanine transaminase (ALT) values. A total of 28,121 individuals were invited to participate in this study, 1475 enrolled, and 839 (female: 65.3%, male: 34.7%) completed the study. Full-spectrum hemp oil was used by 55.7%, CBD-isolate by 40.5%, and broad spectrum by 3.8%. The mean±SD daily dose of CBD was 50.3+40.7?mg. The prevalence of elevated ALT was 9.1%, aspartate aminotransferase (AST) 4.0%, alkaline phosphatase 1.9%, total bilirubin 1.7%, with 85.5% of the ALT elevations < 2×the upper limit of normal (ULN) with only 0.3% having ALT levels > 3× ULN. The prevalence of ALT and AST elevations (9.1% and 4.0%) were not significantly different from known adult general population prevalences (8.9% and 4.9%). There was no significant association between CBD dosage and LT values. Thirty-three individuals with elevated ALT levels had follow-up LT performed with 21 having normal LT, 8 having the same severity of ALT elevation, and 4 having an increase in severity, 1 of which ultimately became normal. Self-medication of CBD does not appear to be associated with an increased prevalence of LT elevation and most of the LT elevations are likely due to the conditions/medications for which the individuals are taking CBD.