Mental Health and Ayahuasca

The following scientific, medical and general research links relate to ayahuasca usage with a large variety of mental health issues, such as sleep disorders, ADHD, Obsessive compulsive behaviour as well as neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s. There is also a large selection of medical papers that discuss what happens in the brain when ayahuasca is ingested.

Scientific Articles

The Scientific Investigation of Ayahuasca – A Review of Past and Current Research
Dennis J McKenna, PhD — Heffter Research Institute; J C Callaway, PhD — Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, University of Kuopio, Finland; Charles S Grob MD – Heffter Research Institute, Department of Psychiatry, Harbor/UCLA Medical Center 

Hallucinogenic Drugs and Plants in Psychotherapy and Shamanism
Metzner, Ph.D., Journal of Psychoactive Drugs (1998)

Use of South American plants for the treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders
Eliana Rodrigues and E. A. Carlini

A six-month prospective evaluation of personality traits, psychiatric symptoms and quality of life in ayahuasca-naïve subjects
Barbosa PC, Cazorla IM, Giglio JSStrassman R.
Journal of Psychoactive Drugs (2009, September - 41(3):205-12) 

Human Psychopharmacology of Hoasca: a plant hallucinogen used in ritual context in Brazil
Grob CS, McKenna DJ, Callaway JCBrito GSOberlaender G, Saide OLLabigalini E, Tacla C, Miranda CT, Strassman RJ, Boone KB.
Journal of Nervous and Mental Disorders (Feb 1996;184(2):86-94)

Altered States of Consciousness and Psychological After-Effects Induced by the First Time Ritual Use of Ayahuasca in an Urban Context in Brazil
Paulo Cesar Ribeiro Barbosa, Joel Sales Giglio & Paulo Dalgalarrondo, Journal of Psychoactive Drugs (2005)

Increased frontal and paralimbic activation following ayahuasca, the pan-amazonian inebriant
Jordi Riba, Sergio Romero, Eva Grasa Esther Mena, Ignasi Carrió, and Manel J. Barbanoj
Psychopharmacology (2006)

Platelet serotonin uptake sites increased in drinkers of ayahuasca
James C Callaway, Mauno M Airaksinen l, Dennis J McKenna, Glacus S Brito, Charles S Grob
Psychopharmacology (1994) 116:385-387.

Effects os a Psychedelic Tropical Tea, Ayahuasca, on the EEG Activity of the Human Brain During a Shamanistic Ritual
Erik Hoffmann, Jan M. Keppel Hesselink and Yatra-W.M. da Silveira Barbosa (MAPS)

The natural hallucinogen 5-MeO-DMT, component of Ayahusaca, disrupts cortical function in rats:  reversal by antipsychotic drugs
Maurizio S. Riga, Guadalupe Soria, Raul Tudela, Francesc Artigas, Pau Celada
Int’l Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology (2014)

Plants and the Central Nervous System
E.A. CarliniPharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior (2003)

A Modern-day Shamanistic Healer in the Peruvian Amazon: Pharmacopoeia and Trance
Dobkin de Rios M.  Journal of Psychoactive Drugs (1989 Abstract)

Ayahuasca Versus Violence
A case report by Ede Frecska, National Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology, Budapest, Hungary

Effects of ayahuasca on sensory and sensorimotor gating in humans
Jordi Riba, Antoni Rodriguez-Fornells, Manel J. Barbanoj, Psychopharmacology (2002)

Composition, standardization and chemical profiling of Banisteriopsis caapi, a plant for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders relevant to Parkinson's disease
Wang YHSamoylenko V, Tekwani BL, Khan IA, Miller LSChaurasiya ND, Rahman MM, Tripathi LM, Khan SI, Joshi VC, Wigger FT, Muhammad I.
Journal of Ethnopharmacology (2010 Apr 21;128(3):662-71)

Psychointegrators: Multidisciplinary Perspectives on the Therapeutic Effects of Hallucinogens
Michael Winkelman, Complementary Health Practice Review (2001; 6; 219)

Ayahuasca in Adolescence: A Preliminary Psychiatric Assessment
Dartiu Xavier Da Silveira, M.D., Ph.D.; Charles S. Grob, M.D.; Marlene Dobkin de Rios, Ph.D.; Enrique Lopez, Psy.D.; Luisa K. Alonso, Ph.D.; et al.
Journal of Psychoactive Drugs (June 2005)

Psychedelic, Psychoactive and Addictive Drugs and States of Consciousness
Ralph Metzner, Ph.D., California Institute of Integral Studies.

Hallucinogenic Music: An Analysis of the Role of Whistling in Peruvian Ayahuasca Healing Sessions
Fred Katz and Marlene Dobkin de Rios, The Journal of American Folklore (1971 Abstract)

Shamanism as Neurotheology and Evolutionary Psychology
Michael Winkelman, American Behavioral Scientist (2002)

Sociopsychotherapeutic Functions of Ayahuasca Healing in Amazonia
Walter Andritzky PhD., Journal of Psychoactive Drugs (1989)

The Psychology of Ayahuasca
Charles S. Grob, M.D., excerpt from “Sacred Vine of Spirits:  Ayahuasca”


Internet Links

Ayahuasca Healing Journey – Into the Amazon
John Gamble (2009 Documentary)

Ayahuasca Healing Journey – Into the Amazon – Part 2
John Gamble (2009 Documentary, Part 2)

Emotional processing - Psychotherapy and altered states of consciousness: Principles, therapeutic possibilities and challenges
Kaspersen and Halvard Hårklau 

What We Can Learn From Shamanic Healing: Brief Psychotherapy With Latino Immigrant Clients
Marlene Dobkin de Rios, PhD., American Journal of Public Health (2002)

Can psychedelic drugs play a role in palliative care?
Ben Sessa, European Journal of Palliative Care (2008)

New Studies of Psychedelics
Steve Beyer, Singing to the Plants Blog (2007)

Psychological Aspects of the Yage Experience in an Experimental Setting
Claudio Naranjo, from Hallucinogens and Shamanism (1973)

Some Relationships between Music and Hallucinogenic Ritual: The "Jungle Gym" in Consciousness
Marlene Dobkin de Rios and Fred Katz, Ethos (1975);jsessionid=50A76000231EFE176A6AF4197943A16F.f03t01?v=1&t=ic7yber4&s=0f17511c0eeecb70661b2e9a7ec2b0d33a25fe3d

Update from the UK and an Interview with Pioneering Psychedelic Psychiatrist Dr. Ronald Sandison
Ben Sessa, Ph.D. (MAPS 2008-09)

Can psychedelics have a role in psychiatry once again?
Ben Sessa. British J Psychiatry 2005.

The Healing Potential of Non-Ordinary States of Consciousness
Walter Mead interviewing Stan Grof

(Move to General Health)

Visionary Vine: Hallucinogenic Healing in the Peruvian Amazon

Effects of the South American psychoactive beverage Ayahuasca on regional brain electrical activity in humans
Jordi Riba, et al.

Religion and Psychoactive Sacraments, An Entheogen Chrestomathy
Thomas B. Roberts, Ph.D. and Paula Jo Hruby, Ed.D.
Heffter Review of Psychedelic Research. (1998). Vol. 1. Santa Fe NM: The Heffter Research Institute.

Human hallucinogen research: guidelines for safety
Johns Hopkins University. WA Richards, RR Griffiths. Journal of Psychopharmacology 2008. 

Images of Healing: Spontaneous Mental Imagery and Healing Process of the Barquinha, A Brazilian Ayahuasca Religious System
Marcelo Mercante. A Dissertation. 2006. 

‘The Realm of Visions’ Towards an Evaluation of the Role of Near-Death Experience in Ayahuasca Psychotherapies
Marcus C.Y. Lumby, Fieldwork Reports of the Peruvian Northwest Amazon, University of Cambridge (1998)

Ayahuasca: New Brain New World

EEG Gamma Coherence and Other Correlates of Subjective Reports During Ayahuasca Experiences
Stuckey, Lawson, Luna. Journal of Psychoactive Drugs. June 2005

Neurofeedback, Growth, and Habit
Lincoln Stoller, Tenger Research (2010)

Ayahuasca and cancer treatment
Eduardo E Schenberg – SAGE Open Medicine (2013)

Indigenous Healing Practice:  Ayahuasca.  Opening a Discussion.
Robert Prue, MSW, Ph.D. and Richard W. Voss, MSW, MTS, DPC – Journal of Pastoral Care & Counseling (2014) 


Other Research Categories

PTSD and Ayahuasca
Drug and Alcohol Addiction and Ayahuasca
Anxiety and Ayahuasca
Depression and Ayahuasca
Schizophrenia and Ayahuasca
General Health and Well-being and Ayahuasca
General Health and Well-being Studies 

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