Posted on 17 September 2012
To see the original post on The Guardian, follow this link
It is thought to have 500,000 users in the UK, yet research into MDMA – the main ingredient in ecstasy – has been minimal. Now Channel 4 is funding a controversial study with volunteers including writer Lionel Shriver and actor Keith Allen
The patient sits on a hospital gurney. The doctor asks how she feels, takes her blood pressure and gives her a capsule to swallow. She is then led to a brain scanner that resembles a giant washing machine, and she lies in front of it before it sucks her in. Doctors study a series of vivid images of her head and brain, looking for activity before she is allowed to leave the scanner. The patient is asked who she would like to have with her at this moment. She replies: “My husband.”
Posted in News
Posted on 02 August 2010
The crack epidemic is one of the most serious phenomena at the interface between public health and security. What makes it particularly bad is the recognized difficulty of overcoming addiction. Well, the Federal University of São Paulo conducted a research with 50 crack addicts who underwent an experimental treatment of harm reduction.Under the guidance of the psychiatrist Dartiu Xavier, the group was treated with marijuana. Of that total, 68% switched from crack to marijuana. At the end of three years, all of those who made the switch did not use any kinds of drugs anymore (neither crack nor marijuana). Note down there: all of them.
I imagined that with the dissemination of these results by Gilberto Dimenstein, in the newspaper Folha de S. Paulo on May 24, there would be considerable interest about the study. Nothing. The answer to the most impressive result of overcoming addiction to crack cocaine in Brazil was the silence. The medicinal use of marijuana has been allowed in dozens of countries including the USA. Around here, the subject remains banned by irrationality. It is clear that marijuana use can produce harmful effects. We know that abuse can lead the user to problems with concentration and memory and in some people, use is correlated to the precipitation of schizophrenic outbreaks. But to criminalize drug use and experiments designed to prevent medical use goes a distance that tends to be covered by intolerance and obscurantism.
To read the full text in Portuguese, click here.
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Posted on 11 December 2009
Should the consumption of drugs be legalized? That was one of 50 questions recently asked to 14,000 people, teens and adults, in six South American countries. The research compared perceptions between generations, and was performed by The Brazilian Institute of Public Opinion and Statistics - IBOPE, commissioned by The Brazilian Institute of Social and Economic Analyses - IBASE. In two countries, Bolivia and Paraguay, the results indicate strong rejection, without generational diferences. In Uruguay and Chile, there are significant distances between perceptions of adults and young people, with a greater degree of agreement among young people. Brazil, alongside Argentina, is in a intermediate position, indicating only a trend of greater agreement among young people.
Is it for the youth to question the gap between repressive legislation and current daily presence of the so-called ‘illicit drugs’ in the life of this young generation? An optimistic view would raise the questioning role that youth can play in historical contexts that require change and innovation. A pessimist might look to evoke the conservatism of today’s youth, consumerist and individualistic, more interested in ‘getting along’. In fact, youth is a mirror of society. In times of uncertanty and social fragmentation, the view of parts of the youth also incorportate repressive speeches, contradictory expectations, as well as reflect clashed of values in society.
Read the full text (in Portuguese).
Posted in News