as Post Hallucinogen Perception Disorder, Hallucinogen Persisting
Perception Disorder involves re-experiencing the symptoms of hallucinogen
without actual taking any of these substances.
What is a
hallucinogen? Hallucinogens are drugs that cause distortions in
a user’s perceptions of reality. Users often see images,
hear sounds, and feel sensations that seem real but do not exist.
Some hallucinogens produce rapid, intense mood swings. The most
common hallucinogens are LSD,
2 C-B, peyote, and certain varieties of mushrooms.
feature of Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder (Flashbacks)
is the transient recurrence of disturbances in perception that
are reminiscent of those experienced during one or more earlier
therefore causes marked distress. Complications of this disorder
include suicidal behavior, Major
Depression, and Panic Disorder.
Main characteristics are:
The re-experiencing, following cessation of use of a hallucinogen,
of one or more of the perceptual symptoms that were experienced
while intoxicated with the hallucinogen (e.g., geometric hallucinations,
false perceptions of movement in the peripheral visual fields,
flashes of color, intensified colors, trails of images of moving
objects, positive afterimages, halos around objects).
The symptoms cause clinically significant distress or impairment
in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.
The symptoms are not due to a general medical condition (e.g.,
anatomical lesions and infections of the brain, visual epilepsies)
and are not better accounted for by another mental disorder.
Some disorders have similar symptoms. The clinician, therefore,
in his diagnostic attempt, has to differentiate against the following
disorders which need to be ruled out to establish a precise diagnosis.
of this disorder are not known.
Some clinicians believe it may be caused by the destruction of
inhibitory neurons that regulate and filter sensory information.
Another theory states that it could be a form of visual seizures
not unlike epilepsy. Since
HPPD is a rare disorder, not much research has been devoted to
what causes it.
Because HPPD symptoms may
be mistaken for other neurological disorders such as stroke or
brain tumors, accurate diagnosis is extremely important. There
is no established treatment for HPPD, although some antidepressant
drugs may reduce the symptoms. Psychotherapy may help patients
adjust to the confusion associated with visual distraction and
to minimize the fear, expressed by some, that they are suffering
brain damage or psychiatric disorder.
and Psychotherapy [ See
Therapy Section ]:
The most important
thing is for you to avoid using or abusing psychoactive substances
and therefore drug rehab therapy is important factor in coping
with the disorder. Treatment is more effective if tailored to
suit a person's specific situation and usually involves a combination
of methods. The different options include individual counselling,
group therapy, medication and supervised/home withdrawal.
Psychopharmacology Section ] :
agents such as clonidine, perphenazine and clonazepan have been
shown to ameliorate this syndrome in some of the individuals seeking