MDMA could be legalized before you know it


As far as drug reputations go, MDMA has a pretty bad one.

For one, MDMA, or "Molly" as the kids are apparently calling it these days, is hailed as a "club drug."

Commonly portrayed as being abused by scantily-clad, neon-loving kids at raves, concerts and dance festivals, the euphoric substance is largely associated with the illegal, immoral and often indecent activity that goes hand-in-hand with its recreational use.

The drug also presents very serious health risks -- it's not unheard of for users to end up with memory loss or even irreparable brain and nervous system damage.

But despite all that, MDMA might be closer to legalization than ever before — and not in the accidental way it got legalized last year in Ireland.

A growing body of research suggests that MDMA may be highly effective in treating Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD, in military veterans, rape victims and other adults.

Though the U.S. government banned MDMA in the 1980s, a small group of medical researchers were recently granted permission to try the drug as medical treatment again.

The treatment consists of three grueling sessions -- sometimes lasting eight to ten hours before the drug's effects wear off.

While lying down on a couch, blindfolded, patients take the drug and then therapists guide them through their worst fears. %shareLinks-quote="So people are able to look at traumatic memories, the fear is reduced and then they're able to separate out that it was happening then and not now." type="quote" author="Rick Doblin" authordesc="Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies" isquoteoftheday="false"%

Veteran Army medic James Casey, a war veteran whose PTSD was successfully treated with MDMA-assisted therapy, told KMGH-TV that "the MDMA was like armor that I put all over my body so that I could dive into the darkness of my PTSD, and then come back unscathed."

And Casey is certainly not the only one who has seen such success.

According to the Journal of Psychopharmacology, research shows that nearly 83 percent of patients are cured, meaning no recurrence of PTSD or other illnesses one year after treatment.

That compares to a slim 25 percent success rate in other PTSD treatments.

KGMH-TV reports that the $21-million dollar FDA-approved study is now entering it's third and final phase -- and if it remains this successful, the FDA could approve the medication for legal use in the U.S. by 2021.

Now, more about that time Ireland accidentally legalized ecstasy...

Ireland Inadvertently Legalizes Ecstasy And Other Drugs
Ireland Inadvertently Legalizes Ecstasy And Other Drugs

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Originally published