Psychedelic therapy for those dealing with death

The benefits of the use of hallucinogens in different forms of psychotherapy are becoming more and more evident. Currently there are several studies underway where terminal cancer patients are being treated with psilocybin. According to the researchers, psilocybin can achieve in one therapy session what might otherwise take months or years, time some of these patients may not have.

In recent studies psychiatrist Charles Grob at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles found preliminary evidence of reduced anxiety and improved mood and quality of life, and an indication that these benefits were sustained over several months.

According to Stephen Ross, who runs the New York University study, doctors have no standard procedures to treat a patient’s end-of-life distress, and this anxiety is often ignored.
“As doctors, we’re good at saving lives,” said Ross. “But we have not learned the art of helping patients have a good death.”
Patients on psilocybin “are in touch with deeper parts of their psyche that they normally aren’t in touch with,” Ross said. “They’re able to make certain connections they wouldn’t normally make.”

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