Two small studies are investigating the use of psychedelic substances in conjunction with counseling to alleviate anxiety and improve quality of life in terminal cancer patients. At present, pharmaceutical drugs are given to patients who develop severe anxiety after being told that they have less than a year to live. These drugs can either cloud the mind or cause an edginess that makes it difficult for dying patients to resolve family and financial matters or to approach death with a sense of peace.
Early in 2004, Dr. Charles Grob, a psychiatrist at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center (Los Angeles, CA), began investigating psilocybin, a potent compound derived from psychedelic mushrooms. Twelve Stage IV cancer patients are being...
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