A new study has found that past research on the cognitive effects of ecstasy may have been flawed and overestimated the damage the drug does to users’ mental ability.
The study, funded by a $1.8 million grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, found that ecstasy users showed no signs of mental impairment.
Saidstudy author John Halpern:
“Researchers have known for a long time that earlier studies of ecstasy use had problems that later studies should try to correct. When NIDA decided to fund this project, we saw an opportunity to design a better experiment and advance our knowledge of this drug.”
While this study found that ecstasy didn’t harm mental performance, Halpern warns that ecstasy still isn’t a safe drug to use:
“Ecstasy consumption is dangerous: illegally-made pills can contain harmful contaminants, there are no warning labels, there is no medical supervision, and in rare cases people are physically harmed and even die from overdosing. It is important for drug-abuse information to be accurate, and we hope our report will help upgrade public health messages. But while we found no ominous, concerning risks to cognitive performance, that is quite different from concluding that ecstasy use is ‘risk-free’."
There is a lot at stake in the ongoing dialogue about drugs!
[Image via AP Images.]