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Definition of «Ecstasy»

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Ecstasy: 1. A state of rapture and trancelike elation.
2. A street name for 3-4 methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), also called "Adam," "ecstasy," or "XTC" on the street, a synthetic, psychoactive (mind-altering) drug with hallucinogenic and amphetamine-like properties. Its chemical structure is similar to two other synthetic drugs, MDA and methamphetamine.

Problems that users encounter with MDMA are similar to those found with the use of amphetamines and cocaine, including:

  • Psychological difficulties, including confusion, depression, sleep problems, drug craving, severe anxiety, and paranoia during and sometimes weeks after taking MDMA (in some cases, psychotic episodes have been reported).
  • Physical symptoms such as muscle tension, involuntary teeth clenching, nausea, blurred vision, rapid eye movement, faintness, and chills or sweating.
  • Increases in heart rate and blood pressure, a special risk for people with circulatory or heart disease.

MDMA use was reported to cause permanent damage to the brain and lead to symptoms resembling those in Parkinson's disease. However, this report was later retracted because the monkeys and baboons in the study were not injected with MDMA but, by mistake, with another drug.

See also: Methylenedioxymethamphetamine.

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