RIO DE JANEIRO, May 12 (Xinhua) -- Brazilian drug registration agency Anvisa announced its decision Tuesday to acknowledge Cannabis sativa - marijuana - as a medical substance.
The inclusion of cannabis in the list of recognized drugs, medicinal herbs and other substances of interest to the medical sector does not mean drugs with cannabis are automatically allowed in the country, or that cannabis can be used as a medical herb in all circumstances, Anvisa said.
Now, cannabis can possibly be included in the list of ingredients of drugs seeking official authorization by the agency, which means that the sale of cannabis-based drugs in the country can increase in a more significant and faster manner.
Earlier this year, Anvisa authorized the sale of the first cannabis-based drug in the country, Mevatyl, which has two cannabis-based components. The drug is prescribed to adult multiple sclerosis patients who do not respond to other treatments.
Before that, Anvisa had authorized the use of cannabis-based drugs in exceptional circumstances and some courts ruled to allow families to plant cannabis domestically to use the substance in the treatment of children with epilepsy.
The substance has been used frequently as an anticonvulsant all over the world.