Over the last few years, research studies probing the therapeutic effects of psychedelics for conditions, like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), have provided strong results, enough for the FDA to designate two common psychedelics as breakthrough therapies for PTSD and depression.
In a recent study, led by researcher Michael Mithoefer of the University of South Carolina, the therapeutic potential of psychedelics, acknowledged now for decades, prompted a series of clinical trials.
According to the study, researchers initiated six Phase 2 clinical trials, in which one group of participants consumed MDMA during trauma-focused psychotherapy sessions, meanwhile the other group received a placebo along with similar therapy.
From the findings, researchers concluded psychotherapy taken in conjunction with the psychedelic MDMA drastically reduced the severity of PTSD symptoms compared to the placebo control group. In fact, psychedelics may be even more effective at reducing the condition’s severity than psychotherapy itself, researchers noted.
Overall, the findings give credence to the theory that both psilocybin and MDMA may soon become significant treatment options for those suffering from PTSD. In early-2020, the FDA approved MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for Expanded Access, giving some patients access to the therapy before the potential of full market approval.
The findings were presented at the 58th Annual Meeting of The American College of Neuropsychopharmacology.