Science is definitely amazing!
Nature is abundant with treatments and cures. It’s just a matter of opening and expanding minds to the alternatives.
A new study from Imperial College researchers suggests that psilocybin, the psychoactive compound of magic mushrooms, might be useful in treating depression.
In a statement, Dr. Robin Carhart-Harris, head of psychedelic research at Imperial said:“We have shown for the first time clear changes in brain activity in depressed people treated with psilocybin after failing to respond to conventional treatments.”
The psilocybin was used on 19 patients. They were given two doses of psilocybin. The first dose of 10 mg was given immediately and the second dose of 25 mg was given a week after the first. The patients reported how they felt by completing clinical questionnaires.
Comparison of images of patients’ brains before and one day after they received the drug treatment revealed changes in brain activity that were associated with marked and lasting reductions in depressive symptoms.
Dr. Carhart-Harris reported: “Several of our patients described feeling ‘reset’ after the treatment and often used computer analogies. For example, one said he felt like his brain had been ‘defragged’ like a computer hard drive, and another said he felt ‘rebooted’.
“Psilocybin may be giving these individuals the temporary ‘kick start’ they need to break out of their depressive states and these imaging results do tentatively support a ‘reset’ analogy. Similar brain effects to these have been seen with electroconvulsive therapy.”
These findings provide a new picture of what happens in the brains of people after they have ‘come down’ from a psychedelic, where an initial disintegration of brain networks during the drug ‘trip’, is followed by a re-integration afterward.
“Through collecting these imaging data we have been able to provide a window into the after effects of psilocybin treatment in the brains of patients with chronic depression,” Dr. Carhart-Harris added.
“Based on what we know from various brain imaging studies with psychedelics, as well as taking heed of what people say about their experiences, it may be that psychedelics do indeed ‘reset’ the brain networks associated with depression, effectively enabling them to be lifted from the depressed state.”
Well, this is interesting! Glad to see there is some controlled, legitimate research so we can prove there are beneficial uses for some substances that are currently thought of as dangerous, immoral, or illegal.
It definitely sounds promising, but I’d wait for confirmation of lack of scary side-effects if I were in need of similar treatment.
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