Health

Photos: Treating PTSD with Ecstasy

Published 2:37 PM ET, Fri November 30, 2012
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Rachel Hope and her daughter at a park in West Los Angeles in 2011. Hope struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder for years before trying a controversial treatment: the drug Ecstasy. courtesy Rachel Hope
MDMA, 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine, was first synthesized in Germany in 1912. Later called Ecstasy, it became a party drug in the 1980s; the Drug Enforcement Administration put it on the list of forbidden substances alongside heroin and LSD. Flashnick Visuals
Dr. Michael Mithoefer and his wife, Annie, in the Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, office where they administer MDMA treatment to PTSD patients as part of their trial. Flashnick Visuals
Hope says she no longer has flashbacks or night terrors and no longer jumps when the phone rings. She gave birth to her daughter in 2008. courtesy Rachel Hope
Hope with her grandmother, mother and daughter in 2011. courtesy Rachel Hope
Hope's grandmother raised her after the age of 6. courtesy Rachel Hope
Hope with her son and daughter in 2010. courtesy Rachel Hope