Home > Adverse experiences resulting in emergency medical treatment seeking following the use of magic mushrooms.

Kopra, Emma I and Ferris, Jason A and Winstock, Adam R and Young, Allan H and Rucker, James J (2022) Adverse experiences resulting in emergency medical treatment seeking following the use of magic mushrooms. Journal of Psychopharmacology, Early online, https://doi.org/10.1177/02698811221084063.

External website: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/026988112...

Psilocybin-containing mushrooms are used for recreational, spiritual, self-development and therapeutic purposes. However, physiologically relatively nontoxic, adverse reactions are occasionally reported.

This study investigated the 12-month prevalence and nature of magic mushroom-related adverse reactions resulting in emergency medical treatment seeking in a global sample of people reporting magic mushroom use.

We use data from the 2017 Global Drug Survey - a large anonymous online survey on patterns of drug use conducted between November 2016 and January 2017.

Out of 9233 past year magic mushroom users, 19 (0.2%) reported having sought emergency medical treatment, with a per-event risk estimate of 0.06%. Young age was the only predictor associated with higher risk of emergency medical presentations. The most common symptoms were psychological, namely anxiety/panic and paranoia/suspiciousness. Poor 'mindset', poor 'setting' and mixing substances were most reported reasons for incidents. All but one respondent returned back to normality within 24 h.

The results confirm psilocybin mushrooms are a relatively safe drug, with serious incidents rare and short lasting. Providing harm-reduction information likely plays a key role in preventing adverse effects. More research is needed to examine the detailed circumstances and predictors of adverse reactions including rarer physiological reactions.

Item Type
Publication Type
International, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
CNS stimulants
Intervention Type
Prevention, Harm reduction
7 April 2022
Identification #
Early online

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