Ecstasy Can Quickly Hurt Brain, Researchers Say

Research Summary
Human brain cells can be altered and damaged by low doses of ecstasy, leading to reduced blood flow to the brain, researchers say.
Bloomberg News reported Nov. 27 that a new study finds that even first-time users of ecstasy experience a decrease in verbal memory, and that taking just a few doses of the drug causes brain changes that can be seen 18 months after first use.
“We don’t know if it’s reversible or permanent,” said researcher Maartje de Win of the University of Amsterdam, who presented the findings at a meeting of the Radiological Society of North America this week. “People should know there might be some consequences for them even after incidental use.”
The study included brain scans of 188 young adults considered at risk of ecstasy use; initial scans were taken before any of the group had used the drug. When follow-up scans were taken 18 months later, 64 members of the group had tried ecstasy; 59 of these were reexamined by researchers, as well as 56 members of the group who had not used the drug.
Source: Nov.2006

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