Ecstasy Drug May Help Treat PTSD

    The study included mostly patient subjects whose prior treatment-resistant PTSD stemmed from sexual assault, though it also included a military veteran.

    Brad Burge, a MAPS spokesman, said a separate ongoing study in South Carolina of 24 patient subjects will include a significant number of veterans. It was originally envisioned as veteran-only, but subsequently was expanded to include firefighters and police, Burge said.

    “We don’t know what the demographics of the remaining subjects will be,” he said. “We expect that they will be either entirely or mostly vets.”

    Researchers decided to include first responders for two reasons: you could bring people into the study without flying them in from around the country and at the same time study the effects of the therapy on that group.

    “Overall, though, the study is intended to be for men and women with military backgrounds,” Burge said.

    The so-called war on drugs has been part of the problem, according to Rick Doblin, founder of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, which analyzes the use of psychedelic drugs in mental health treatment. Federal agencies have blocked or delayed testing of drugs that could potentially help PTSD sufferers, including veterans, because they see it as possibly giving drugs to people who have a high incidence of drug abuse, Doblin said in an earlier interview with Military.com.

    That may be part of the reason the Defense Department has not funded Ecstasy-assisted therapy research.
    But Burge said military and political leaders are going to have to get involved.

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