Ecstasy Substance Use Disorder
Pp. 121-127 (7)
Subhash C. Bhatia and Aly Hassan
Ecstasy or 3, 4- methylenedioxymethamphetamine also called a club drug
because of its use in “rave” parties has both stimulant and psychedelic effects.
Stimulant effect which precedes psychedelic effect causes euphoria. In addition
through release of oxytocin prosocial and empathic behavior as well as sense of
intimacy is experienced. The psychedelic effect causes distortion of sensory
perceptions. This drug is popular with adolescents and young adults and often
associated with prolonged weekend “rave” parties. Its use causes depletion of serotonin
which may cause depression and suicidal behavior. Depression may also be caused by
“crash” from stimulant effect. With intoxication of ecstasy patient often experiences
autonomic effects like elevated blood pressure, elevated temperature, cardiac
arrhythmia, and panic attacks. In addition patient may experience headaches, vertigo,
seizure and loss of consciousness. For intoxication treatment is supportive and
symptomatic. There are no specific medications for its treatment. Psychosocial
interventions like cognitive behavioral therapy, social and coping skills training and
treatment of comorbid psychiatric disorder are very valuable options.
Club drug, Ecstasy, MDMA, Oxytocin release, Pro social and pro
empathy drug, Rave parties.
Department of Psychiatry, Mental Health and Behavioral Sciences, Creighton University; Department VA Nebraska- Western Iowa Health Care System 4101 Woolworth Ave Omaha, NE 68105, USA