Thursday, September 11, 2008

Treating Childhood Schizophrenia with Psychedelics

Psychedelic Salon Podcast #156
Guest speakers: Gary Fisher and Charlie Grob
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In 1963, Dr. Gary Fisher wrote a paper titled:

"An Investigation to Determine Therapeutic Effectiveness of LSD-25 and Psilocybin on Hospitalized Severely Emotionally Disturbed Children"

The complete paper is available in HTML and PDF

Dr. Charles Grob

[From the above report]
We have given treatment to 12 patients. They have ranged in age from 4 years, 10 months to 12 years, 11 months. The average age is 9 years, 10 months. All patients are severely emotionally disturbed and are considered variants of childhood schizophrenia and infantile autism. Nine Children are considered to be childhood schizophrenics, one case of symbiotic, infantile psychosis and one case of manic-depressive psychosis.
. . .
We have found that the patients who have responded best to the treatment are those who: have speech; are more schizophrenic than autistic; older (10 to 12 yrs.); exhibit more blatant psychotic symptomatology
. . .
Higinio Gonzalez & Gary FisherThe working hypothesis of this study is that the psychosis is a massive defensive structure in the service of protecting and defending the patient against his feeling and effectual states. The experiences that have produced such painful and frightening affect have been repressed and the feelings produced by such traumas have been denied. Consequently, the individual has built a massive control system wherein all experience is denied and he exists in an isolated, unfeeling condition which renders him helpless and incapacitated. The psychedelic drugs have the potential of breaking this psychotic control which then allows the individual to re-experience his trauma and to again experience his feelings.Art by Higinio

This phenomena has been amply proven with our work with these severely disturbed children, wherein they return to traumatic experiences and re-live and re-experience them. By working through these painful episodes the patient is then able to rid himself of the horror of them, to reevaluate their significance and be freed of the psychic effects of their repression. This process has been repeatedly observed in our psychotic children. The transcendental experience, often described in the literature, has occurred with 4 of our children. It might be added that we were very surprised to see this experience occur in such disturbed and young children.

Articles by Dr. Gary Fisher from the Albert Hofmann Foundation:

The article below is one referred to in Gary Fisher's conversation
Ayahuasca and Cancer: One Man's Experience by Donald M. Topping, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus, University of Hawai'i

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