A new study performed by a team of Dutch researchers has determined that ecstasy can cause brain damage. We already know that the illegal drug has claimed several lives of one-time users so brain damage for long-term users should not come as a surprise.
The study looked at the hippocampus portion (memory) of the brain in ten men in their twenties who have abused the illegal drug for a long period of time and the researchers also looked at the brains of seven men who had never used ecstasy. All seventeen men in their mid-twenties had an MRI scan of the brain done. “The scans revealed that ecstasy users had an average of 10.5 percent less hippocampal volume than non-users. The users also had an average 4.6 percent lower overall proportion of grey matter in the brain, which suggests that the effects of ecstasy may not be limited to the hippocampus.”
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People who abuse the illegal drug ecstasy are at high risk for brain damage and loss of memory. Researchers are unsure at this time if ecstasy abuse could develop into Alzheimer’s at this time. The hippocampus is associated with the development of dementia and Alzheimer’s.