Forums - General Discussion - Ecstasy Was Just Labelled a 'Breakthrough Therapy' For PTSD by The FDA

It's been obvious for 40 years.

...Has it? 2 9.09%
Still Wouldnt take thst stuff 7 31.82%
Hell Yeah! Finally 8 36.36%
o....k...? 5 22.73%

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has determined that 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), also known as ecstasy, is a 'breakthrough therapy' in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Thanks to this designation, the drug could have a faster path to pharmaceutical approval.

The Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) announced the FDA's ruling last week, revealing that they can now move forward on two of their upcoming 'Phase 3' trials.

The goal of these trials is to determine how effectively the drug can be used to treat those suffering from PTSD. The trials will include 200 to 300 participants, and the first trial will begin to accept subjects in 2018.

"For the first time ever, psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy will be evaluated in Phase 3 trials for possible prescription use, with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD leading the way," said Rick Doblin, Founder and Executive Director of MAPS.

The trials will be held in the U.S., Canada, and Israel, and MAPS plans to open talks with the European Medicines Agency in the hopes of expanding testing to include Europe. For now, the focus is on securing the funding they require.

According to Science, the organisation is still in the process of raising money for the trials, and thus far, they've only managed to secure US$13 million, about half of their goal.

Since 1986, MAPS has been conducting MDMA trials in the hopes of proving the drug's therapeutic value. Following the 2011 release of a small study in the US, the drug has gained traction as a potential treatment for PTSD.

Since then, scientists have been pushing for additional testing, but ecstasy's stigma as a harmful street drug has hindered progress. The FDA's new designation could change that.

"This is not a big scientific step," David Nutt, a neuropsychopharmacologist at Imperial College London, explained to Science. "It's been obvious for 40 years that these drugs are medicines. But it's a huge step in acceptance."

Previous MAPS trials exploring how well MDMA could treat PTSD have yielded favourable results, contributing to the FDA's aforementioned decision. In the association's Phase 2 trails, 107 people who had PTSD for an average of 17.8 years were treated using MDMA-assisted psychotherapy.

After two months, 61 percent of the participants no longer suffered from PTSD. After a year, that number increased to 68 percent, according to the MAPS press release.

PTSD only needs a small trigger like a sound, smell, or an object to bring a traumatic memory rushing back. Nearly 8 million adults experience PTSD per year, and children can suffer from it as well.

Should MDMA prove to be an effective and safe treatment, it could help millions of people live normal, healthy lives without fear of the next debilitating PTSD episode.



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Guess we can start telling kids that not all drugs are bad...

Made a bet with LipeJJ and HylianYoshi that the XB1 will reach 30 million before Wii U reaches 15 million. Loser has to get avatar picked by winner for 6 months (or if I lose, either 6 months avatar control for both Lipe and Hylian, or my patrick avatar comes back forever).

barneystinson69 said:

Guess we can start telling kids that not all drugs are bad...

No, we have the pharmaceutical marketing industry doing that for us already.

Massimus - "Trump already has democrat support."

This has been on the horizon for a while. Psilocybin (the bits that make magic mushrooms fun) has also been showing extraordinary results for fear and stress disorders.

Obviously this isn't just a case of having a trip over the weekend and being cured. these are minutely administered doses in a safe environment and during therapy sessions. They use the mdma as a sort of key to unlock the trauma and establish a deeper trust between patient and therapist and it apparently works very well.

It's an interesting topic for sure.

It certainly helped releasing my traumata, but I'd say LSD and psilocybin are even better at that if taken in the right environment. Interesting study indeed.

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That's nice and all. But, like all other drugs, it should be up to the user and the user only to determine whether a drug is right for them. The FDA, DEA, and any other regulatory or law enforcement agency should stay out of the way of people's personal medical decisions.

Can't wait for all the people taking Ecstasy and claiming it's for "medical reasons".

Miguel_Zorro said:

Can't wait for all the people taking Ecstasy and claiming it's for "medical reasons".

Well, just like with all medical drugs, there are benefits and side effects. It affects each person differently, so whether or not it will be beneficial is hard to determine.


Can you also get a perscription for crippling depression?

I mean...

drugs are bad!mckay

Actually that is wrong. The correct street term for MDMA is "Molly". "Ecstasy" refers to MDMA that is cut with a secondary drug such as coke, meth, heroin, Mesculine etc.

Really hope people don't see this article and jump to conclusions.

Furthermore, even standard MDMA, while therapeutic, does come with severe side effects. Essentially the drug acts as a key to the glands that store and produce serotonin or dopamine in your brain. While you're under the influence of the drug, your brain is dumping the serotonin/dopamine stored in these glands which is where the feeling of happiness and euphoria comes from. Over time these glands wear out due to these kinds of drugs as they are being overworked beyond normal conditions. The end result of repeated use of such substances is an inability by these glands to produce natural serotonin/dopamine at a regular level - ie, you will not be as naturally happy after prolonged exposure to the drug.

In lamens terms, MDMA and ecstacy will make you feel great temporarily. But you're destroying your brains ability to create happiness on its own. This comes from personal experience with the drug in my high school years as well as how I observed the way it affected others, in addition to research that is readily available on the web.

Ultimately not worth it if you can't regulate your use! It has a long term negative affect on how happy you will be while off the drug!