Medicinal use

Although psilocybin/psilocin is currently not being prescribed for any medical condition, research and case reports have shown that the compound has medicinal and therapeutic potential.

In 2001, Dr. Francisco Moreno at the University of Arizona started the first FDA-approved clinical trial involving a psychedelic in 30 years. In this study, psilocybin was administered to nine obsessive-compulsive disorder patients. The study found that psilocybin could be safely given to patients with OCD, and it was associated with substantial reductions in OCD symptoms in several of the patients.

In July 2006 the John Hopkins University published the results of a clinical study in which a dose of pure psilocybin was administered to a group volunteers. The group consisted of 36 people who hadn’t previously taken the drug. Six were given a ritalin placebo, while the rest received 30 milligrams of pure psilocybin — a dose roughly equivalent to five grams of dried psilocybe cubensis mushrooms.

After each session, volunteers will be asked to evaluate their experience. Some of it may be unpleasant. “Hallucinogens uncover the truth,” Dr. Charles Grob, researcher in the project, says. “Sometimes the only way to get to the other side is to work through some of the darkness.”

Volunteers took the dose under the guidance of two trained mentors, with the traditional laboratory setting scrapped in favor of a living room appointed with a comfortable couch, headphones and other spiritual journey aids.

At the time, the volunteers reported mystical experiences — typically described as a “sense of unity” — in which the confusion of the world and of competing value systems came together in a coherent whole. These were not described in recreational terms, but as profoundly meaningful spiritual events. Fourteen months later, over half reported substantial increases in life satisfaction and positive behavior, while no long-term negative effects were reported.

Currently there is a study underway a the John Hopkins University, where cancer diagnosed volunteers and the states of consciousness brought about by psilocybin, and their impact on psychological distress and spirituality are studied.

Cluster headaches psilocybin treatment

Cluster headaches are a rare, severely painful form of headache that is related to but different from the more common migraine. It is the most painful condition known to man. Through experimenting and anecdotal reports, a group of sufferers who now work together under the name ‘clusterbusters’, found out about the effectiveness of psilocybin and other indole-ring entheogens (LSD,LSA) in cluster headaches. A single small dose of mushrooms has proven to abort attacks, and prevent new cycles.

Links / further reading