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Conditions That Might Benefit From LSD Therapy

LSD Tab: conditions that might benefit from LSD therapy

In this article Frshminds takes a deep dive into the conditions that might benefit from LSD therapy.  With increasing amounts of frequency, media outlets are highlighting the potential benefits of a range of psychedelics in the management of psychological issues. Whether its about finding an underground guide to take you on your psychedelic journey, highlighting Cary Grant’s experience with LSD or getting involved in psychedelic research, the general public is showing more and more interest in what were once considered “street” drugs, despite the widespread and unfounded fears that psychedelic drugs, like LSD, lead to psychosis and increased risk of suicide.

Studies reporting the possibility of using LSD as a therapeutic treatment for various mental health conditions were published from the 1950s. But following the USA’s criminalization of LSD in 1966, clinical research was abandoned and its potential forgotten for decades. One of the most prominence experts in the field of psychedelics, Dr. James Fadiman has been researching the usage and effects of LSD and found it can help with:

  • Better productivity and focus.
  • Increased creativity & flow state.
  • Reduction in symptoms of depression & anxiety.
  • Reduction in ADD/ADHD.
  • Reduction in mood disorders.
  • Reduction of addictive behavior,

While often lumped together, psychedelics have different pathways of action:

  • LSD and psilocybin effects’ depend on 5-HT2A agonism.
  • MDMA inhibits monoamine transporters, especially for serotonin.
  • Ketamine is an NMDA antagonist.
  • Ibogaine non-specifically binds to many receptors.

Treating PTSD Conditions with LSD

PTSD affects nearly 8 million adults in any given year, federal statistics show,
Conditions That Might Benefit From LSD Therapy occurring across all ages and demographics and developed in a reaction to severe mental/emotional distress or physical injury, including:

  • Abuse (sexual, physical, emotional)
  • Military combat
  • Natural disaster
  • Violent assault, or
  • Other life-threatening events.

As of March 2020, there are a number of psilocybin and LSD assisted psychotherapy trials underway in Europe and the United States, but no formal clinical trials investigated these substances in specific relation to PTSD, although the current body of medical evidence suggest such work should be done. Prior to PTSD’s introduction into the DSM-iii as a psychiatric diagnosis (and sometimes psilocybin and ketamine) Dutch psychiatrist Jan Bastiaans was a driving force for the use of LSD in the Netherlands as a therapeutic tool in the treatment of what was then called concentration camp syndrome. The core of this therapy, used to treat hundreds of patients, consisted of enabling them to re-experience the traumatic event with appropriate emotional abreaction under therapeutic guidance. In a long-term follow-up study on 12 patients, 11 patients reported moderate to strong improvements after their treatment. Prior to this in the 1960s, many patients were treated with classical psychedelics, but they were not diagnosed with PTSD due the fact that it was not a diagnosis.

Managing Addictions with LSD

Addiction and LSD: Conditions That Might Benefit From LSD Therapy

LSD may help people manage serious drug and behavioral addictions

In the 1950s–1970s, studies conducted with LSD—which acts on the same brain receptors as psilocybin—reported strong results in treating substance use disorders, including alcohol and heroin addiction. But when LSD became illegal in 1968, funding for this work gradually dried up. Most psychedelics research stopped or went underground.

Researchers at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology analyzed studies of LSD used to treat alcoholism. Patients were taking part in alcohol treatment programmes and some were given a single dose of LSD of between 210 and 800 micrograms. Of the patients given LSD, 59% showed reduced levels of alcohol misuse compared with 38% in the other group, although this effect was maintained six months after taking the hallucinogen, but it disappeared after a year. Those taking LSD also reported higher levels of abstinence.

Treating Cluster Headaches with LSD

Cluster headache, part of the headache disorders called trigeminal autonomic cephalalgias, occur in groups/clusters, periods of brief, excruciatingly severe headache attacks that recur between 1-8 times per day. Cluster headaches’ age of onset is most often between 20 and 40 and Cluster Headaches: Conditions That Might Benefit From LSD Therapy while initially thought to be more common in men than in women, recent evidence says the gender split is about even. is often said to be the most painful of all headaches; it has been described as “boring,” “burning,” “like a hot poker in the eye” and as “suicide headache” usually involve just one side of the face; patients often liken the pain to someone trying to pull their eye out for hours. Some report episodes of headaches lasting up to months at a time, with periods of remission, while some report no remission periods. This puts patients in a desperate situation, and illicit psychoactive substances are often considered a last resort.

Scientific and medical interest in treating cluster headaches with psychedelics seemed to get kick started with Dr. John Halpern, a psychiatrist at Harvard Medical School who found that his recreational use of LSD cured cluster headaches that he had suffered for 18 years. Intrigued with this result his research team located 53 people with experience treating their cluster headaches with psychedelics and found that the majority of them found relief from their symptoms.

Research of anecdotal experiences with lysergic acid diethylamide, and related psychedelic tryptamines were reportedly effective for both prophylactic and acute treatment of cluster headache and migraines.

As early as 2011, research showed patients treated with 2-bromo-LSD, a nonhallucinogenic analog of LSD, showed a significant reduction in cluster headaches per day; some were free of the attacks for weeks or months. According to one of the researchers, “Some of these patients are still reporting significant relief more than a year after they were treated with the compound”.

LSD and Anxiety

MAPS completed Phase 2 pilot study in 12 subjects found positive trends in the reduction of anxiety associated with life threatening disease following two LSD-assisted psychotherapy sessions. The study results also indicate that LSD-assisted psychotherapy can be safely administered in these subjects, and justify further research.

Alleviating Depression with LSD

The LSD micro dosing trend has led some people to believe the drug is useful in a more regulated and directed role. Managing depression with LSD . Some research suggests using LSD for depression and there is currently a large Swiss study underway exploring LSD Therapy for Major Depression. This goal of the study, which is predicted to be completed 2023 is testing the efficacy of LSD therapy in patients with Major Depressive Disorder in 60 patients. The treatment group will undergo two sessions with LSD (100 & 200 μg) and the control group will undergo two sessions with an active placebo (25 μg and 50 μg LSD).


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