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Ecstasy Now FDA-Approved PTSD Treatment

Ecstasy.DEA/Wikimedia

What is commonly known as a party drug is now an actual method of treating patients who are experience post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has officially classified Ecstasy as a “breakthrough therapy” and is on its way to becoming legally accessible for medicinal purposes.

The news was announced by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) last week, noting that they can now move forward with their “Phase 3” trials. This is basically where human patients come in and for this particular experiment, over 200 participants are going to be given ecstasy to see just how well the drug helps alleviate the damage caused by PTSD.

Phase 3 will be called "A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Multi-Site Phase 3 Study of the Efficacy and Safety of Manualized MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy for the Treatment of Severe Posttraumatic Stress Disorder," which builds on the data collected during Phase 2. According to the Executive Director of the MAPS Public Benefit Corporation (MPBC), Amy Emerson, this process will go a lot more smoothly with the approval of the FDA.

"Reaching agreement with FDA on the design of our Phase 3 program and having the ability to work closely with the agency has been a major priority for our team," Emerson said. "Our Phase 2 data was extremely promising with a large effect size, and we are ready to move forward quickly. With breakthrough designation, we can now move even more efficiently through the development process in collaboration with the FDA to complete Phase 3."

The trials will be held in the US, Canada, and Israel, Futurism reports, and MAPS will soon start recruiting participants to join the tests. If all goes well, ecstasy will be joining cannabis as a means of treating illnesses. Speaking of which, marijuana has also been used to treat PTSD patients, which should make some promising and potentially fun possibilities down the road.

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