Ecstasy Can Cause Brain Damage Even After First Use, Study Says

At first glance, this report sounds like a ONDCP press release, but it the researcher’s from Amsterdam and it’s being presented by a staid medical society. Stereotypes suggest it’s credible.

Low doses of the drug were linked to subtle changes in the architecture of brain cells 18 months after first use… While extensive use has already been shown to harm neurons in the brain, causing depression, anxiety and memory loss, this is the first study to identify the risk of brain damage among those who have taken only a few doses.

“We don’t know if it’s reversible or permanent,” said Maartje de Win, a radiology resident at the University of Amsterdam, in a telephone interview today. “People should know there might be some consequences for them even after incidental use.”