Ecstasy Trials Approved
Thursday – February 22, 2007
Illegal dance drug ecstasy is being used to treat patients suffering Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Authorities in Switzerland have approved the use of the drug – officially known as MDMA – for trials.
It is the first time they have given consent for the controversial treatment.
Around 12 volunteers will take part in the trials, which will end next year, and some have already completed their stint.
Peter Oehen, who is leading the scheme, said the drug would “produce a change of consciousness, a feeling of wellbeing, reduction of fear and help them face up to the very difficult feelings associated with trauma, such as anxiety”.
Ecstasy has been linked to a number of deaths over the years.
But experts believe controlled testing – for over 18s – will be safe, with no long-term damage.
The Swiss trial is being run alongside tests in the US, which have reportedly had favourable results.
The UK’s Sky News published a short article describing Dr. Peter Oehen’s MAPS -sponsored pilot study evaluating MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for subjects with treatment-resistant post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).