HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - CBD is also known as cannabidiol, a chemical that comes from the same plant as marijuana.
While experts say it can't get a person high, it seems to be taking off in the health industry for what doctors say is a good reason. Now, one pharmacy in the Carolina Forest area is joining the trend and offering these products.
Carolina Forest Pharmacy is the first family-owned, independent pharmacy in the Carolina Forest area to offer CBD products. Before bringing the hemp-based items into the pharmacy, owner Sam Abraham said the staff did extensive research to find a high-quality CBD that will achieve the medicinal effect it's expected to.
Experts say the most common misconception of hemp is that it's a drug. But they say hemp is not marijuana; it's a crop and it can't get a person high at all.
Abraham said he decided to carry CBD products in his pharmacy because he recognized not only a trend in the market but a need for it, noting he wants to provide safe and efficient alternatives for patients.
Carolina Forest Pharmacy partnered with Anada Professional, a company that produces hemp-based CBD oils. The pharmacy now carries CBD products that come in three different forms - salve, capsules and drops.
"Their motto is 'Farm to Pharmacy.' So, they go ahead and cultivate the plant, they extract the CBD oil and then they ship it to us. So, we have kind of a good handle on the process, from the seeds being picked, the CBD being extracted, to come to us," said Abraham.
He added that having a knowledgeable staff at the pharmacy to help people learn about CBD products is a great benefit for patients.
"We approached this decision with great caution. We approached it with a pharmacological perspective where we are looking at the receptors in your body and what kind of complaint you have and how we're going to treat each and every individual patient, what other medication they are taking. So, it's not like a one-size-fits-all. There is a difference in each patient and we approach that decision with great caution," said Abraham.
By offering CBD products at his pharmacy, Abraham hopes it will be a step in the right direction to helping curb the nationwide opioid addiction crisis.
"Now, we are trying to decrease patient use of opioid medication and that's a great addition here that patients can use. It is non-addictive, and as you take this dose for a few days, we always recommend to taper down your other medication and see how your body feels and how it works for you. So, I think that's a good additional tool, where it can help our patients decrease their use of opioid medications," said Abraham.
The World Health Organization recently stated CBD does not induce physical dependence and is "not associated with abuse potential."
Studies have shown CBD can be used to treat ailments like muscle pain, anxiety and even seizures.
The South Carolina Department of Agriculture recently announced it received 162 applicants for the 2019 Industrial Hemp Program. Abraham said with industrial hemp farming growing in South Carolina, and other pharmacies in Horry County carrying hemp-based products, he hopes for even more places to carry CBD in the future.
"Our patients need it and we are here for our patients, and it's awesome that other pharmacies are embracing the same trend. If the folks in Surfside have seen the benefits, we have seen the benefits. It seems like there's consistency where most pharmacists have read the same research, have seen the impact. Patients (have) requested the medication, thus we started carrying it," said Abraham.
Abraham says the staff at Carolina Forest Pharmacy is available to answer any questions and help assist in any way they can.