MAPS was approached in early 2004 by Bob Wold, a cluster headache patient advocate (www.clusterbusters.com), who has collected more than 50 case reports of people reporting very positive results in breaking cluster headache cycles and delaying the reoccurrance of cluster headaches through using psilocybin or LSD. At present, there are some medications that are used to stop cluster headaches, which are more severe than migraines, but they are not fully effective in many patients, and they do not prevent the cycling course of cluster headaches.
Marsha and David Weil have donated $50,000 for this research effort and Joseph Leonard has donated $2,000. An estimated $250,000 in addition is being sought to support this clinical trial. Potential donors can contact at Clusterbusters for more information. The effort to design and obtain approval for a study will be led by Dr. John Halpern at Harvard Medical School. Protocol development is still underway.
Dr. Sewell and Halpern have completed and published a case series of people with cluster headaches who used psilocybin or LSD to treat their condition.
- Sewell RA, Halpern JH, Pope HG Jr. (2006) Response of cluster headache to psilocybin and LSD. Neurology 27;66: 1920-1922.