The Long Psilocybin Goodbye

Dried Cubensis

Public Domain photo by Eric Fenderson.

I’ve got PTSD and depression both after reading today’s article on ecstasy, psilocybin (psychedelic mushrooms) and ketamine for depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. The author, Ann Harding, quotes retired FDA medical officer Bruce Stadel, M.D., as saying, “These drugs in the 60s were just let loose without any proper study. [Now] they’re going through the FDA, through the process of clinical trials.”

What’s traumatizing is reading the description of the hoops the researchers have to jump through to generate a reasonable placebo environment. These measures are not without their necessity, I’ll admit — after all, a placebo control for magic mushrooms is not like one for statins in a cholesterol study. Assuming the drug has any effect at all and was given at an effective dose, what kind of a pinhead wouldn’t notice they’d eaten mushrooms? It kind of nullifies the placebo control when the psychotherapist’s face starts melting, right? Kinda hard to miss that.



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