Nature Science

‘Magic Mushrooms’: Cancer Patients Find Solace In This Mystical Drug

Magic Mushrooms: Cancer Patients Find Solace In This Mystical Drug

Dealing with cancer is almost fatal! And no, the implication is not towards late diagnosis, chemotherapy sessions and medications! There is much more to it. The fact that once you are affected by this disease, it can return again, is really dreadful. The patients dealing with cancer treatment can vouch for the anxiety and depression, they have to deal with!

This is what led Dinah Bazer; a patient of ovarian cancer enrolls in a trial at New York University. In here, the researchers were looking to test a substance that they aspired to have mystical and charismatic ability to eradicate depression and anxiety associated with the fear of ending life. The drug is the component of magic mushroom called psilocybin. When, Bazer took the pill, she felt better like being bathed in God’s presence. And the feelings of anxiety and drug have not returned.

Magic Mushrooms: Cancer Patients Find Solace In This Mystical DrugThe drug is the component of magic mushroom called psilocybin.

These sorts of trails and their results were published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology on December 1. This implied that now a Food and Drug Administration consent is required to move forward the experiment for a mass scale Phase 3 study.

There has been a recent announcement that the FDA would allow trials utilizing MDMA. Since, many attributes have been associated with MDMA; this particular announcement has raised hopes in the researchers of psilocybin that they will get the approval soon as well.

Immense research and test considering the impact of psilocybin has been pursued time and again.

The good news with regards to the same on a number of healthy people was that it did not have any adverse effect of the drug. However, this did not also mean that it was completely risk free. The cancer patients have been dealing with a lot of anxiety and depression. The traditional methods of treatment did not do any good to them. However, when they were given just a single dose of psilocybin, it proved helpful.

cancer-retreat-1The researchers found that mediation and spiritual music may be helpful for cancer patients

It will be interesting for the readers to know about some facts associated with the experiment:

  • The patients were given 20 mg of psilocybin for a weight of 154 pounds.
  • In order for the patients to start feeling the impact of the same it took almost 20 to 40 minutes.
  • During the experiment patient listened to nice and spiritual music.
  • A gold standard psychiatric evaluation was performed on the patients and it was found that after a total of 6 months, 80% of the 51 participants in the JHU study portrayed a decrease in depression and anxiety.
  • So far, the results have indeed been encouraging.

However, the drug is still Schedule I drug, meaning, it has not been accepted legally.

Theoretical explanation of impact of the drug

There is a probability that it is due to default mode network. In depressed patients this goes up. However, with meditation and psilocybin, there might be a drop in the default mode network activity.

Yet again, this is just a simplistic theory.

Immense research and approval is the need for this long and continual process!

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