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Methoxetamine (MXE): A Phenomenological Study of Experiences Induced by a "Legal High" from the Internet
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Social and Psychological Studies.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5668-0469
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1690-2573
2013 (English)In: Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, ISSN 0279-1072, Vol. 45, no 3, 276-286 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Methoxetamine (MXE), a ketamine analogue, is one of the new “legal highs” sold on the Internet. The aim of this qualitative study was to provide an initial understanding of what character- izes the experiences induced by MXE. Anonymously written reports (33 persons) on the effects of MXE were collected from public Internet forums and analyzed using the Empirical Phenomenological Psychological Method. The analysis generated 10 themes: (1) preparation, motivation and anticipation; (2) initial effects; (3) malfunction of cognitive processes stabilizing normal state; (4) inner personal processes and learning; (5) emotional processes; (6) altered sensory perception; (7) dissolution and transition; (8) spiritual and transcendental experiences; (9) effects and processes after the experience; (10) re-dosing and addiction.

MXE induced a heavily altered state of consciousness. The effects were similar to those induced by classic hallucinogens (such as LSD, psilocybin) and the dissociative ketamine. MXE seemed to have quite a high abuse potential. Beside the positive effects described, negative effects like fear and anxiety were also reported. Acceptance was considered the best coping strategy. Dissolution of iden- tity and body often culminated in spiritual and transcendental experiences. More research is needed on safety issues, how to minimize harm, and the motivation for using legal highs. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London, UK: Routledge, 2013. Vol. 45, no 3, 276-286 p.
Keyword [en]
MXE, internet drug, research chemical, methoxetamine, altered states of consciousness, addiction
National Category
Social Sciences Psychology
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-27444DOI: 10.1080/02791072.2013.803647ISI: 000327941800010PubMedID: 24175493OAI: diva2:624194
Available from: 2013-05-30 Created: 2013-05-30 Last updated: 2015-11-12Bibliographically approved

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Kjellgren, AnetteJonsson, Kristoffer
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