A new study published in Nature Medicine found that ibogaine therapy significantly reduced symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depression, and improved cognitive function in veterans with traumatic brain injury.
The study enrolled 30 U.S. special operations veterans in the study, all of whom had received Foundational Healing Grants from the nonprofit organization Veterans Exploring Treatment Solutions (VETS) for travel support and ibogaine therapy. VETS said that the 30 participants selected had a history of TBI and repeated blast exposures, and were experiencing clinically severe psychiatric and cognitive impairments before seeking support from their organization.
The paper, authored by Dr. Nolan Williams, director of the Brain Stimulation Lab at Stanford University, found that the plant-based psychedelic drug ibogaine effectively treated TBI in the special operations veterans.
“I went from being constantly angry and feeling alone, burdened by the trauma of war and the loss of 12 friends to suicide, to finding a renewed sense of hope and peace,” said Patrick Flatley, a U.S. Army Green Beret veteran and study participant. “The turning point was ibogaine treatment. Today, I am grateful to sleep well, live without daily fight or flight reactions, and look forward to life with newfound hope.”
The study found that before the ibogaine treatment, participants scored an average of 30.2 on the World Health Organization Disability Assessment Schedule 2.0, which is equivalent to mild to moderate disability.
According to a statement from VETS, “At one month following ibogaine treatment, the average rating improved to 5.1, equivalent to no disability. The researchers also found a statistically significant reduction in suicidal ideation from participants, decreasing from 47% to 7% one month following treatment. The participants experienced no serious side effects or heart complications resulting from the ibogaine treatment.”
“Veterans are on the front line of our national defense, but here they are on the front line of cutting-edge research that has the potential to help millions of people – both in and out of uniform,” said Amber Capone, Co-Founder and CEO of VETS. “We remain laser-focused and dedicated to our mission of supporting access to psychedelic-assisted therapies for veterans and advancing research into their safety and efficacy. Our collaboration with Stanford University and Dr. Williams is a major step forward in proving the potential of ibogaine for treating PTSD and TBI.”
The participants in the study received treatment at the privately owned Ambio Life Sciences, an independent clinic in Mexico that provides somatic therapies alongside psychedelic therapies in a medically supported environment.
“This reinforces what we’ve learned through thousands of treatments, that ibogaine can be safe and effective when provided in the right context. For Ambio, the study further highlights the remarkable healing potential of ibogaine, which we’re confident will expand the treatment landscape for veterans and many others,” said Jonathan Dickinson, Ambio’s CEO.