Psychedelics are Being Researched for Re-Introduction into Medical Care
The Legal Status of Psychedelics
In the past 15 years, for the first time since the early 1970s mind-altering medications with the ability to expand human consciousness are undergoing systematic clinical research with the goal of establishing new therapies for hard-to-treat conditions.
Our Medical Director Paul Abramson MD was an early graduate of the Certificate in Psychedelic Therapies and Research (CPTR) program at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco, has been involved in psychedelic science since for over 20 years, and has provided support to the clinical trial team at UCSF which is studying group therapy combined with psilocybin sessions for demoralization in long-term AIDS survivors.
Most psychedelic medicines are still available legally only within the context of FDA-approved research into their uses for depression, anxiety, demoralization, addictions, PTSD and other diagnoses. LSD, magic mushrooms containing psilocybin and psilocin, Ayahuasca containing DMT, mescaline, and MDMA are still Schedule I controlled substances. While we hope that their legal status may change in the future, for now their use occurs "underground" and not within medical practice.
Current clinical trials of psilocybin and other classical psychedelics can be found at www.clinicaltrials.gov. Please search there if you are interested in participation in research studies.
We do offer ketamine treatment for certain severe mental health and chronic pain conditions. However, all new patients must be referred by a board-certified psychiatrist or psychologist to be considered for this. Click here for information.
Our physicians and psychotherapists at My Doctor Medical Group take a compassionate, non-directive and empowering approach to helping our patients make the most from their past psychedelic experiences.
NOTE: We do not provide Schedule I substances to patients. Nor do we encourage engagement in illegal activities, including the purchase and consumption of illegal substances. In accordance with ethical and legal standards, we do not refer or assist our patients in seeking out purveyors of "underground" psychedelic therapy. We use a harm-reduction approach to provide education, improve safety, and help integrate experiences after the fact.
In keeping with a compassionate harm-reduction approach, we educate our patients about the effects of these powerful medicines.
We help our patients understand how these medicines might interact with:
- Other medications;
- Physical health conditions;
- Psychological issues and stressors;
Our physicians can also conduct a review of health status including:
- A comprehensive physical examination;
- A psychological evaluation, identification of intentions, goals and risk factors;
- Review of medications and dietary supplements to avoid unanticipated interactions;
- Cardiac testing and risk stratification as indicated;
- Laboratory testing as indicated.
Ketamine for Depression and Anxiety Disorders
Ketamine is the one psychedelic compound which is currently legal to administer to patients in a medical setting in the United States. A dissociative anesthetic used in pediatric and adult anesthesia, procedural sedation and pain management, ketamine has also been found in clinical studies to quickly reverse certain cases of severe treatment-resistant depression. Other research has suggested potential utility in obsessive compulsive disorder, social anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental health conditions.
At My Doctor Medical Group we have been providing ketamine-assisted psychotherapy since 2016, amassing a substantial amount of experience in how best to decide whether ketamine will be a useful addition to a treatment plan, t dose and route of administration will work best, and how to integrate the experience to achieve the best outcomes.
Psilocybin for Mental Health Conditions
We do not prescribe or provide psilocybin or any other Schedule I controlled substances. These are all still illegal for any use in the United States
Psilocybin, the predominant psychoactive ingredient in Psilocybe species mushrooms that were traditionally used in indigenous spiritual practices in southern Mexico, has become a prime candidate for a new treatment model for severe depression.
Other conditions are also being investigated, including alcohol use disorders, demoralization in long-term AIDS survivors, tobacco use disorders, and anxiety related to life-threatening illness or end of life.
Also poised to enter phase 2 and 3 clinical studies for depression, psilocybin is combined with a course of psychotherapy aimed at making best use of the psychedelic experience through careful preparation, curation and integration. Psilocybin is not currently available outside of authorized clinical trials. See www.clinicaltrials.gov to search available clinical trials.