The New York Times reported that the FDA has approved the popular club drug ecstasy for large-scale drug trials after evidence emerged that the drug may assist those suffering with PTSD.
PTSD, a disorder that affects millions worldwide, can be caused by trauma related to warfare, military service, pregnancy or birth, among other scenarios.
Dr. Charles R. Marmar, head of psychiatry in New York University’s Langone School of Medicine, told the NY Times that PTSD can be very difficult to treat.
He said that preliminary results show that ecstasy can be effective in treating the symptoms.
Ecstasy, a drug often popular with young club-goers, initiates a feeling of euphoria, light visual hallucinations, and speed. Many users describe feelings of happiness, confidence, and life-altering capabilities.
These effects can be beneficial for those suffering with PTSD, a disorder that often results in suffers becoming depressed, suicidal, or social anxious.
The Food and Drug Administration recently approved clinical trials for over 230 patients in order to determine if ecstasy can in fact help sufferers.
This means that if ultimately approved, the drug may be prescribed to patients by doctors or psychiatrists in a controlled manner.
Can it Work?
According to the NY Times, a study found that those given ecstasy to treat PTSD, coupled with counseling, portrayed a 56% drop in symptoms. Another 67% even showed a lack of of PTSD, allowing them to no longer be considered on the spectrum of the disorder.
The Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies plans to sponsor the trials. The organization advocated for certain drugs to be used in similar therapeutic purposes. Drugs include LSD, “magic mushrooms”, marijuana, and others.
An issue some raise is the idea that the substance can be abused or sold to those without a prescription.