Parental Perceptions and Usage of Unlicensed Cannabidiol Products in Children with Anxiety and Neurodevelopmental Disorders
Journal of Pediatric Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Data evaluating the use of unlicensed cannabidiol (CBD) products for the treatment of symptoms associated with anxiety and neurodevelopmental disorders in children are limited despite increasing product availability. The objectives of this study are to quantify the usage of unlicensed CBD products among pediatric patients diagnosed with anxiety and neurodevelopmental disorders and compare the perceptions of CBD between parents who administer a CBD product to a child and parents who do not.
A survey containing 31 items was designed after pretesting with pediatric health care professionals. The refined survey was distributed using Qualtrics Panels to a representative sample of US parents of a child 7 to 18 years of age diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and/or generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Responses were analyzed with descriptive statistics and compared using a χ2 or Mann-Whitney U test.
Of the 518 completed surveys, 162 parents (31.3%) reported the administration of an unlicensed CBD product to a child with ADHD, ASD, and/or GAD. The highest prevalence of use was found in the West geographic region and among children diagnosed with GAD or with 2 or more diagnoses (i.e., ADHD, ASD, GAD). Parents who administered CBD products had more positive views of product safety and higher perceived community support for usage.
Nearly one-third of parents have administered an unlicensed CBD product to a child with ADHD, ASD, and GAD. Health care providers should assess pediatric patients for CBD use and be prepared to engage parents in conversations regarding the safety of these products.
CBD, cannabidiol, children, anxiety, neurodevelopment, safety
Schwaller, Kathryn N.; Krauss, Zachary J.; Chen, Aleda M.H.; and Cole, Justin W., "Parental Perceptions and Usage of Unlicensed Cannabidiol Products in Children with Anxiety and Neurodevelopmental Disorders" (2023). Pharmacy Practice Faculty Publications. 437.