- The Federal penalty for manufacturing or selling ecstasy can lead to fines up to four million dollars. A ringleader or head manufacturer of ecstasy could receive life in prison.
- Researchers at The Johns Hopkins University demonstrated that 4 days of exposure to the drug caused damage that persisted 6 to 7 years later.
- Some pills sold as ecstasy actually contain little or no MDMA. Pills may contain other drugs such as PMA or another MDMA analogue, DXM, household chemicals such as Ajax or rat poison, or other (sometimes lethal) byproducts.
- Memory tests of people who have taken Ecstasy as compared to non-drug users have shown that the Ecstasy users had lower scores.
MDMA or ecstasy is a Schedule I synthetic, psychoactive drug possessing stimulant and hallucinogenic properties. Ecstasy possesses chemical variations of the stimulant amphetamine or methamphetamine and a hallucinogen, most often mescaline. Commonly referred to as Ecstasy or XTC, MDMA was first synthesized in 1912 by a German company possibly to be used as an appetite suppressant. Chemically, it is an analogue of MDA, a drug that was popular in the 1960s. Today Ecstasy is most often distributed at late-night parties called "raves", nightclubs, and rock concerts. As the rave and club scene expands to metropolitan and suburban areas across the country, ecstasy use and distribution are increasing as well. Ecstasy users may encounter problems similar to those experienced by amphetamine and cocaine users, including Ecstasy addiction.
Ecstasy users commonly report a "burnout" for one-two days afterward, characterized by tiredness, soreness, and dullness of the senses and mental processes. It is possible that this is a result of temporary depletion of certain neurotransmitters in the brain, and that the brain needs time to replenish them. The use of Ecstasy has been linked with a wide range of abnormalities such as impaired memory, chronic depression, anxiety, panic attacks, sleeplessness, "de-personalization", "de-realization", reduced cognitive ability, flashbacks, hallucinations, and paranoid delusions. Persons taking large quantities of Ecstasy in a binge pattern of use were thus at risk. Heavy users might develop depression and anxiety in the future. A user becomes a veritable neurological time-bomb.
The most common withdrawal symptoms of Ecstasy include but are not limited to:
- panic attacks
- paranoid delusions