Sy Atezaz Saeed, MD, MS, and Kathryn E. Clary, BA

Published in Current Psychiatry

June 2020



There has been increasing interest in the medicinal use of cannabidiol (CBD) for a wide variety of health conditions. CBD is one of more than 80 chemicals identified in the Cannabis sativa plant, otherwise known as marijuana or hemp. Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the psychoactive ingredient found in marijuana that produces a “high.” CBD, which is one of the most abundant cannabinoids in Cannabis sativa, does not produce any psychotomimetic effects.

The strongest scientific evidence supporting CBD for medicinal purposes is for its effectiveness in treating certain childhood epilepsy syndromes that typically do not respond to antiseizure medications. Currently, the only FDA-approved CBD product is a prescription oil cannabidiol (brand name: Epidiolex) for treating 2 types of epilepsy. Aside from Epidiolex, state laws governing the use of CBD vary. CBD is being studied as a treatment for a wide range of psychiatric conditions, including bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, dystonia, insomnia, and anxiety. Research supporting CBD’s benefits is limited, and the US National Library of Medicine’s MedlinePlus indicates there is “insufficient evidence to rate effectiveness” for these indications.


Open Access


Saeed, Sy Atezaz & Clary Kathryn E. (2020). “Cannabidiol for psychosis: A review of 4 studies”. Current Psychiatry. June;19(6):24-30