50 years ago LSD was prescribed to treat a variety of mental illnesses. More recently LSD and MDMA (ecstasy) have become widely used outside medicine as both recreational drugs and by some patients as ‘self-medication’. These brief reports gather together five patients’ experiences using psychedelic drugs to treat their mental disorders. They are discussed in relation to the medical profession’s current growing interest in re-visiting psychedelic drugs as therapeutic treatments in psychiatry. The first case describes the successful self-treatment for depression using LSD, followed by a case in which doctors administered LSD in the 1960s and 1970s to successfully treat a case of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and chronic fatigue syndrome. The third and fourth cases describe the successful self-treatment of OCD using respectively MDMA and then LSD and the final case describes a self-treatment with LSD to manage Anorexia Nervosa. All the participants describing their use of these drugs give a positive report of self-treatment with minimal adverse effects. They also all support a resumption of more research into the therapeutic use of hallucinogens/psychedelic drugs as potential clinical therapies.
Sessa, B. (2010). Self-medication of LSD and MDMA to treat mental disorders: A case series. The Journal of Alternative Medicine Research, 2(2), 245-249.
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