Mania following use of ibogaine: A case series

This case report (n=3) examines patients who developed manic symptoms and diagnosed with Bipolar-I disorder in response to ibogaine use. None of the patients had a prior diagnosis or family history of bipolar disorder, but all of them were poly-drug users or recovering from addiction. Manic symptoms which often included grand delusions that lasted up to two weeks after using ibogaine.

Abstract

Background: Ibogaine is a naturally occurring hallucinogen with postulated anti‐addictive qualities. While illegal domestically, a growing number of individuals have sought it out for treatment of opiate dependence, primarily in poorly regulated overseas clinics. Existing serious adverse events include cardiac and vestibular toxicity, though ours is the first report of mania stemming from its use.

Objectives: To report on a case series of psychiatric emergency room patients whose unregulated use of ibogaine resulted in mania in three patients with no prior diagnosis of bipolar illness.

Methods: Review and summarize charts of three cases. Relevant literature was also reviewed for discussion.

Results: Two cases of reported ibogaine ingestion for self‐treatment of addictions, and one for psycho‐spiritual experimentation resulted in symptoms consistent with mania. No prior reports of mania were found in the literature, and the literature suggests growing popularity of ibogaine’s use.

Conclusions: The three cases presented demonstrate a temporal association between ibogaine ingestion and subsequent development of mania.”

Authors: Cole J. Marta, Wesley C. Ryan, Alex Kopelowicz & Ralph J. Koek

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