LSD Could Cure Depression

Originally appeared at: MIND-BENDING drugs like LSD, ketamine and magic mushrooms could be used to treat people suffering from depression, scientists said today. The psychedelics could give patients “a new perspective” helping them to see their pain and problems in a different light, Swiss boffins revealed. But, writing in a medical journal, they warned the drugs should only be taken in small doses and combined with other treatments such as psychotherapy. They added that research into the effects of psychedelic drugs had been restricted in the past, because of their negative reputation. The key drugs scientists are hoping could help treat depression are lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), the horse tranquiliser ketamine, and psilocybin, the psychoactive ingredient found in magic mushrooms. Franz Vollenweider, of Zurich University, who co-wrote a paper on the subject in the Nature Neuroscience Journal said: “Psychedelics can give patients a new perspective – particularly when things like suppressed memories come up, and then they can work with that experience. “The idea is that it (use of psychedelic drugs to treat patients with depression) would be very limited, maybe several sessions over a few months, not a long-term thing like other types of medication.” Psychedelics can produce feelings of bliss, but can also cause users to feel anxious. A US study published this month found that ketamine, an anaesthetic used legally in both human and veterinary medicine, can lift the mood of patients with bipolar depression within minutes. This broad article discusses the potential of several psychedelics to treat psychological disorders.