OPEN Foundation

Current perspectives on psychedelic therapy: use of serotonergic hallucinogens in clinical interventions

Share This Post

Share on facebook
Share on linkedin
Share on twitter
Share on email

Humans have used serotonergic hallucinogens (i.e. psychedelics) for spiritual, ceremonial, and recreational purposes for thousands of years, but their administration as part of a structured therapeutic intervention is still a relatively novel practice within Western medical and psychological frameworks. In the mid-20th century, considerable advances were made in developing therapeutic approaches integrating administration of low (psycholytic) and high (psychedelic) doses of serotonergic hallucinogens for treatment of a variety of conditions, often incorporating psychoanalytic concepts prevalent at that time. This work contributed seminal insights regarding how these substances may be employed with efficacy and safety in targeted therapeutic interventions, including the importance of optimizing set (frame of mind) and setting (therapeutic environment). More recently, clinical and pharmacological research has revisited the effects and therapeutic potential of psychedelics utilizing a variety of approaches. The current article provides an overview of past and present models of psychedelic therapy, and discusses important considerations for future interventions incorporating the use of psychedelics in research and clinical practice.

Garcia-Romeu, A., & Richards, W. A. (2018). Current perspectives on psychedelic therapy: use of serotonergic hallucinogens in clinical interventions. International Review of Psychiatry30(4), 291-316., 10.1080/09540261.2018.1486289.
Link to full text

Floris Wolswijk

INTERESTED IN PSYCHEDELIC RESEARCH AND THERAPIES?

Subscribe to the OPEN Foundation’s newsletter to stay in the loop, hear about our events, and become a part of a community dedicated to advancing psychedelics.

By clicking subscribe, I confirm to receive emails from the OPEN Foundation and agree with its privacy policy.