MDMA can be effective as a PTSD treatment, a study suggests
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder” (PTSD) is a mental health issue that can be a debilitating condition and the treatment for it is often the use of a variety of treatments.
The research is ongoing on the use of psychedelics to treat mental health issues, such as PTSD.
Recent research has found that the psychoactive drug MDMA can be extremely efficient in treating severe or moderate PTSD when used in conjunction along with psychotherapy.
A recent studyTrusted Source has confirmed that 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), commonly known as ecstasy, may be a helpful aid in the treatment of PTSD.
The research is part of an increasing number of studies that examine the effectiveness of alternative treatments, including psychedelics such as MDMA and Psilocybin to treat various mental health disorders.
The study was several different samples as well as a double-blind, placebo-controlled, phase 3 trial. The findings suggest that clinicians could eventually employ MDMA as a treatment option for patients of PTSD.
The research findings were reported in the journal Nature MedicineTrusted Source.
MDMA’s efficacy as a PTSD treatment
This particular study was based on years of research. Since it is a double-blind placebo-controlled research, there is a low chance of bias, which allows for excellent data collection. Researchers sampled 104 people who suffered from severe or moderate PTSD. About 27% of the participants identified as Hispanic or Latino, and nearly 34% of them identified themselves as being non-white.
Researchers split the participants in two categories: one group receiving MDMA and the other group receiving the placebo. They then studied the ways in which MDMA decreased PTSD severity when compared to placebo.
The researchers used the clinician-administered PTSD Scale for DSM-5 (CAPS-5) to measure PTSD severity. A greater score on this scale suggests greater severity of PTSD. Researchers also used to use the Sheehan Disability Scale (SDS)Trusted Source to evaluate functional impairment. In this instance, this test assessed the extent to which PTSD affected participants’ day-to-day lives. A higher score means an increased level of impairment.
The results of the study revealed that MDMA was extremely efficient in the reduction of PTSD severity and impairment of functioning in comparison to placebo. Of the 52 patients who took MDMA, 45 showed significant clinical benefits.
The majority of those that received MDMA did not satisfy the criteria for PTSD when they were re-tested. In general, the treatment was well-liked by participants.
“This significant phase 3 trial of MDMA assisted treatment for PTSD confirms the positive results of the earlier MAPS stage 3 trials, and strongly recommends FDA approval. When it is approved, MDMA-assisted treatment to treat PTSD is the very first psychedelic approved by FDA. therapy.”
— Dr. Keith Heinzerling, internist, addiction medicine specialist Director of The Pacific Treatment & Research in Psychedelics (TRIP) Program for the Pacific Neuroscience Institute in Santa Monica, CA, who was not part of the study, was interviewed by Medical News Today.