AFP Journal of Education
Table of Contents Page #
Introduction: What is MDMA? ..2
Dependency and Detection 8
Rave party/ College students 9
Conclusion .. 11
What is MDMA?
is a chemical substance called a designer drug or the mellow drug of
Heightened awareness of sensory input,
Experienced as a flood of sensation
An enhanced sense of clarity
Diminished control over what one experiences ( Carroll, 215)
Carroll explains that a persons sensations are heightened by an intense effect on the mind and the body. The minds functions are expanded to a point that all senses appear to be enhanced. The process of diminished control is from the intense effect on the brain and its senses in the body and outside of the body. The substances of MDMA disrupts the minds function, so a persons ability to have control over senses and bodily functions becomes diminished in his or her experiences.
MDMA is known as Ecstacy, Adam, XTC, M&M, the Yuppie Drug, Essence, Clarity, Venus, Zen, and Doctor( Brust, 70). This drug is available in clubs in the form of pills and powder. These forms of MDMA are taken orally ( Brust, 70). MDMA is a drug that seems to be a pleasure enhancer, yet studies indicate that users of 20 to 180 days have altered serotonin in the central nervous system (Brust, 70). Many college students and other young people do perceive MDMA as a harmless pleasure drug, but in actuality its effects are dangerous. The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), and researchers are concerned about young people
taking take this mind altering drug(J. Drug Education, Volume 33(3), 247). This research paper discusses three studies on MDMA and its effects: one, on serotonin and MDMA in the brain; two, the toxic activity of MDMA in the brain, and three, on rave party attendees abuse of MDMA, so these studies reveal a connection to college students behavior and physical condition after ingesting MDMA.
In 1914, the E.
Merck Pharmaceutical Company in
1950s Methylenedioxyamphetamine was ignored during its use to treat animals,
so in the 1980s,doctors used Methlenedioxyamphetamine for psychotherapy( Drug
Education, Volume 33(3), 246). Doctors
prescribed MDMA to their patents because this drug increased self-esteem,
self-insight, enhanced empathy, enhanced communication, and interpersonal
relations(Drug Education, Volume 33(3), 246).
The use of MDMA became a recreational drug among American college
students, because it was legal to buy in the
In 1985, The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) attained a temporary restriction of the use of MDMA under schedule I. Under the Controlled Substance Act of 1970, schedule I means that a chemical substance become illegal substance, if it is harmful and unsafe to use( J. Drug Education, Volume 33(3), 245). In July 1985, animals studies reveal that animals that ingested MDMA for periods of one month to 90 days have suffered neurotoxin damage. The DEA used this report to prove that MDMA should be placed on schedule I (J. Drug Education, Volume 33(3), 245).
In 1988, a judge ruled that MDMA should be placed on schedule III, for the reason that there is no evidence to show that this drug is harmful and unsafe (J. Drug Education, Volume 33(3), 245). Schedule III is a substance used for medical use, so MDMA was being sold in bars and nightclubs (J. Drug Education, 245).
In 1992, the Supreme Court allowed permanent classification for MDMA as schedule I. because the DEA presented more animal studies that explained animals given dosages of MDMA showed long term effects to serotonin in the brain (J. Drug Education, Volume 33 (3), 246). Since 1990, the DEA were trying to get ruling for federal aid to continue animal studies of MDMA long term effects on serotonin in the brain. The judge also allowed more studies on the long term effects of MDMA on the central nervous system. (J. Drug Education, Volume 33(3), 246).
The negative effects of MDMA are potentially harmful to the central nervous system and the brain, because investigations revealed reports on undesirable effects of MDMA( Carroll, 226). For instance, a MDMA user can receive negative side effects such as psychological difficulties reported by the user include mental
confusion, depression, anxiety, generalized panic, and even paranoia( Carroll, 226).
These are mental reactions to the effects of the chemical substance in MDMA. The common problems are nausea, blurred vision, faintness, and increased heart rate(Carroll, 226). The long term effects will depend on neurotoxic effects of MDMA , which is currently being investigated, yet the initial evidence suggests that
permanent serotonin depletion( J. Drug Education, Volume 33(1), 62).
Severe consequences may occur when an abusers prolonged use of MDMA, but this drug causes serotonin depletion in the brain ( Carroll, 227). Carlton Blanton and Lou Hughes explain that the levels of serotonin provide increased calmness and combat depression(Blanton, 202). Serotonin is a chemical that passes messages from one neuron to another neuron in the central nervous system (Blanton, 202). Serotonin passes the message to the neurotransmitters to the brain in order to bring the feeling of calmness. The purpose of serotonin is to pass messages to the brain to allow a particular thought to soothe pain, reduce anxiety, combat depression, and induce sleep( Blanton, 202). The serotonin may impact with the chemicals of MDMA in the central nervous system. Consequently, through long term usage, these chemicals of MDMA will cause depletion of serotonin (Burst, 70).
these users seek out ecstacy cut with other drugs( J. Drug Education, Volume, 67). This shows that there is no research that has explored ecstacys place in the drug-using pathway, therefore there is no way to detect those older users who use MDMA at one point.
The first research study
on college students and alcohol consumption and ecstacy had two methodological
logical limitations: one, no studies have focused on rave attendees in the
United States; and the second methodological limitation, no studies on the rave
attendees had focused on perceived harm of ecstacy (J. Drug Education, Volume
33(2), 188). For instance, the methodological limitation is due to a research
asserting that human beings suffer neurotoxic effects after taking ecstasy for
long time (J.Drug Education, 33(1), 62). The first study on college students
and alcohol consumption and ecstasy shows broad studies on related rave club
12 month day users in organizations and fraternities( J. Drug Education, Volume 33(1), 67).
The second research study on college students and rave clubs was conducted by two college students as interviewers in May 2002 at Baltimore-Washington. These college students attended the rave clubs between 10p.m and ( J.Drug Education, Volume 33(2), 189). The interviewers approached all groups of students at the rave club, and attended answers to questions in many interviews(189). The questions ranged from topic of two day use of MDMA to 30 day use to 90 day use( J. Drug Education, Volume 33(2), 189). The interviewers followed a module of questions that focused on the responders perception of the harm of MDMA( J.Drug Education, 33(2), 190). The interviewer asked the college students to think about harming themselves as they took this drug( J. Drug Education, 33(2), 190). The college students were asked about long term effects of MDMA (190).
The results were that 80 percent of the 70 students interviewed reported 12 months usage of MDMA, and 40 percent have been using for the last two days( J. Drug Education, Volume 33(2), 190). The interviewers also conducted a T-test which is a self-evaluation test on the effects and harm of the drug ( J. Drug Education, Volume 33(2),192). The data for these results were computed as ratios regular chronic use of ecstacy is 1 to 3, and of these users, they believed that MDMA is physically harmful, ratio 1 to 0.
After these interviews, the responses were coded 1, 2, and 3, so the rave attendees were rated at rate risk; 1 for no risk, 2 for moderate risk, 3 for strong risk. Most of these students did not see MDMA as a long term risk ( J. Drug Education, Volume 33(2), 192). The new users response was a ( 3 ) on the fact that MDMA is both physically and psychologically harmful. The long term users were rated (1) for the fact that MDMA is both physically and psychologically harmful. (J. Drug Education, Volume 33 (2), 192).
Blanton, C.,Hughes. Strategies and Techniques for Health Promotion and Drug Prevention
Brust, John C.M. Neurological Aspects of Substance Abuse Butterworth-
Charles R. Drugs in Modern
Society Mc Graw Hill.
Fieldman, Robert S. Principles of Neuropsych Pharmacology Sinauer Associates
Yacoubian, George S. Correlates of Ecstacy use among students surveyed through
The 1997 college alcohol study.Journal of Drug Education.
Volume 33(1) PP. 61-69. 2003
Yacoubian, George S. Its a Rave new world: estimating the prevalence and
Perceived harm of ecstacy and other drug use among club
Rave attendees Juurnal of Drug Education. Volume 33(2)
PP. 187-196. 2003.
George S. Tracking ecstacy trends in
Three national drug surveillance systems. Journal of Drug
Education. Volume 33(3) PP. 245- 258.
Copyright © 2004, Humberto Garciasalas. All rights reserved.
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