Psychedelics and Pain

Psychedelics and pain is one of the 'psychedelics and ...' topics that we're currently making a page for. At this moment you can find all papers (in our database) on this topic below.

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Our vision is that psychedelics can be used worldwide to better the lives of as many as 450 million people who suffer from mental health problems. Our information hopes to make that vision come to life just a little faster.

Pain Research

Here will be a narrative, readable, summary of the research.


In our literature study we came across the following studies of note. Browse the meta, review, commentary articles for an overview. Check out the individual studies for specific experiments and observations.

Neuroendocrine Associations Underlying the Persistent Therapeutic Effects of Classic Serotonergic Psychedelics

2018 | D’Souza, D. C., Schindler, E. A. D., Sloshower, J. A., Wallace, R. M.

This review (2018) proposes that psychedelics may exert their effectiveness on certain pathologies through the neuroendocrine system (hormone release due to stimulation of the nervous system).

Chronic pain and psychedelics: a review and proposed mechanism of action

2020 | Bruno, K. A., Castellanos, J. P., Furnish, T., Halberstadt, A. L., Woolley, C., Zeidan, F.

This review (2020) investigates the (limited) research on psychedelics for chronic pain and notes the limitations op opioids (and the current epidemic of use).

Psilocybin dose-dependently causes delayed, transient headaches in healthy volunteers

2012| Griffiths, R. R., Johnson, M. W., Sewell, R. A.

This study (n=18) found that psilocybin frequently caused mild to moderate delayed and transient headaches in healthy volunteers in a dose-dependent manner.

Exploratory Controlled Study of the Migraine-Suppressing Effects of Psilocybin

2020| Cozzi, N. V., D’Souza, D. C., Flynn, L. T., Gottschalk, C. H., Lindsey, H., Luddy, C., Pittman, B. P., Schindler, E. A. D., Sewell, R. A.

This double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over study (n=10) finds that a medium dose of psilocybin (10mg/70kg) significantly reduced migraines (headaches) in the two weeks after dosing.

Attenuation and anticipation: A therapeutic use of lysergic acid diethylamide

1972| Kast, E.

This open-label clinical study (n=128) investigated whether LSD (100μg) can alleviate death-anxiety in terminally ill patients by decreasing the anticipation of their illness, and found that the administration of LSD was universally well tolerated. Specific effects included a general lift of mood that lasted for 11-12 hours, acute pain relief that lasted 12 hours, decreased the total pain intensity for 3 weeks, and diminished concern over the anticipation of death for up to 3 days after administration.

Low dose ketamine reduces pain perception and blood pressure, but not muscle sympathetic nerve activity, responses during a cold pressor test

2020| Belval, L. N., Cimino III, F. A., Cramer, M. N., Crandall, C. G., Hendrix, J. M., Hinojosa-Laborde, C., Huang, M., Moralez, G., Watso, J. C.

This randomized, crossover, placebo-controlled, lab-based trial (n=22) tested the hypothesis that low dose ketamine blunts perceived pain, and blunts subsequent sympathetic and cardiovascular responses during an experimental noxious stimulus. The authors found that low dose ketamine administration attenuates perceived pain and pressor, but not MSNA burst frequency, responses during a CPT.


This section compares the research with psychedelics to other therapies, medicines, or treatments.


This section highlights the various measures used and their use in research.


Who are the top researches in this area, the ones who have done the groundbreaking research.


What do we not know at this time? Where are the gaps in our knowledge and are we closing it?


The companies that are actively engaged in researching this topic or (planning to) provide therapy focussed on this topic.

Outside Academia

This section highlights everything done outside of academia, from popular press to books and non academic research.