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Psychedelic Medicine: New Evidence for Hallucinogenic Substances As Treatments
by Michael J. Winkelman & Thomas B. Roberts (Eds.)
Book Reviews
Reviewed by R. S. Kowalczyk, 4/10/2008

When hallucinogenic drugs are mentioned, one is more likely to think of drugs of abuse, mind-altering drugs, or drugs subject to governmental regulation than of drugs that may have a therapeutic application. For this reason, this two-volume treatise serves a useful purpose not only in providing an update on the limited number of hallucinogenic drugs that already have some therapeutic application (based on relatively limited research), but also by covering the history of these mind-altering drugs and the cultural, social, political, legal, economic, and ethical factors that have encumbered research on these compounds. The work is well organized, with chapters written by medical and legal professionals active in the field. The book cites literature references, and each chapter has explanatory notes as required. A central theme, uniformly optimistic about the end result, pervades the work: that much more research is needed to explore and discover the therapeutic potential of these drugs. Some technical sections, on the known or suggested mode of action of some of the drugs and the parts of the nervous system involved, may require more than a cursory knowledge of neurology. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Lower-level undergraduates and above; general readers.

— R. S. Kowalczyk, formerly, University of Michigan

Originally Published In : Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, Jan 2008
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