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Hallucinogens Facts | side effects history & prevention
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See the PCP Angel Dust section for more information.


Commercial and Street Names

Ketaset®, Ketalar®, cat valium, K, special-K, vitamin K.

Here is a two page fact sheet about Ketamine, including a list of street terms for Ketamine.

Description of Ketamine

Ketamine is currently used in human anaesthesia and veterinary medicine. Usually diverted from veterinary hospitals. Similar to PCP. Manufactured as an injectable liquid, in illicit use Ketamine is evaporated to form a powder. Snorted, swallowed, or injected. Ketamine is odourless and tasteless, so it can be added to beverages without being detected, and it induces amnesia.

Commonly used as a “date rape” drug. Popular at “raves” and night clubs. See the Date Rape Drug section for more information.

Ketamine 1
Ketamine is manufactured as a liquid.

Peyote 1
Peyote cactus.

Mushroom 1
Whole dried psilocybin.

2C-B 1
2C-B tablet. Source: Wikipedia

Peyote 1
DXM is commonly an active ingredient in cough syrup and liquid capsules. Since most cough medications also contain acetaminophen, prolonged consumption can result in liver damage.

LSD on blotter paper.

LSD capsules contain bright-coloured powder to attract young people. Source: DEA

Coloured LSD applied to sugar cubes.

Ecstasy 1
Ecstasy tablets. Source: DEA

PCP in foil wrappers. Source: DEA

PCP tablets. Source: DEA

Effects of Ketamine

Ketamine is a dissociative drug similar to PCP (see PCP) but with milder respiratory depression, less confusion, irrationality and violent behaviour. Long-term effects are unknown.

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See the LSD Psychedelics section for more information.

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Commercial and Street Names

Maria Pastora, Sage of the Seers, Diviner’s Sage, Salvia, Sally-D, Magic Mint.

Description of Salvia Divinorum

a member of the mint family grown in certain areas of Mexico. Used by Mazatec Indians for ceremonial healings. Active ingredient known as salvinorin A found primarily in the leaves. Usually chewed or smoked. Used mostly by teens and young adults who purchase it over the Internet. Liquid extracts purported to contain salvinorin A are sold at local head and tobacco shops.

Effects of Salvia Divinorum

Smoking results in effects within 30 seconds and lasts about 30 minutes. Causes hallucinogenic effects.


Commercial and Street Names for Synthetic Cannabis

Also known as synthetic marijuana. Slang Terms: Spice, K2, Fake Weed, Skunk,
Moon Rocks, Zohai, Genie, Bliss, Black Mamba, Smacked!.

Description of Synthetic Cannabis

Product contains dried, shredded plant material and chemical additives. Popular among teenagers, particularly boys. Difficult to detect in standard drug tests.

Effects of Synthetic Cannabis

Can be usually smoked but sometimes prepared as an herbal infusion for drinking. Produces an experience similar to marijuana such as relaxation and altered perception. However, rapid heart rate, vomiting, agitation, confusion, and hallucinations can also occur. In a few cases, heart attacks have been associated with spice. Effects of Spice’s effects are not well known.

Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), Drug Facts, “Spice (Synthetic Marijuana),” December, 2012.

For more information see the Understanding the ‘Spice’ Phenomenon on the The European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) website.


Commercial and Street Names for Synthetic Cathinones

Three Most Common: (1) (3,4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV). Slang Terms: Ivory Wave, Bloom, Cloud Nine, Lunar Wave, Vanilla Sky, White Lightning, Scarface. (2) mephedrone (Slang Terms: Drone, Meph, Meow Meow). (3) Methylone. There are many other synthetic cathinones, including naphyrone.

Description of Synthetic Cathinones

A family of drugs as opposed to a specific drug. Called “bath salts” or, less frequently, “plant food,” “jewelry cleaner,” or “phone screen cleaner” as a way to avoid detection by authorities.

Effects of Synthetic Cathinones

Can produce euphoria and increased sociability and sex drive. However, paranoia, agitation, and hallucinations can also occur. In rare cases, deaths have been reported. Bath salts are either white or brown crystals that can be taken orally, injected, or inhaled. Bath salts cause a euphoric effect similar to stimulants such as cocaine and amphetamines. At the same time, bath salts also have a hallucinogenic effect similar to MDMA or LSD. Bath salts are dangerous drugs that can cause racing heart, chest pains, high blood pressure, paranoia, hallucinations, and panic attacks. In some cases, dehydration, kidney failure. MDPV, mephedrone, and methedrone have proven fatal in several instances. Bath salts may contain other, unknown ingredients that cause additional harmful effects.

Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), Drug Facts, “Bath Salts,” November, 2012.

For more information see the synthetic cathinones page on the The European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) website.


See the Ecstasy section for more information.


Commercial and Street Names for Mescaline and Peyote

Buttons, cactus, mesc. Here is an additional list of street terms for mescaline.

Description of Mescaline and Peyote

Peyote is a small cactus whose principal active ingredient is mescaline. Mescaline can be extracted from peyote or produced synthetically. Usually ingested orally as a powder, tablet, capsule or liquid. Most peyote and mescaline sold in Canada is actually PCP or LSD. Peyote “buttons” are generally chewed or ground up and smoked.

Effects of Mescaline and Peyote

Effects appear slowly but can last 10 to 18 hours. Changes in perception and mood, loss of appetite, numbness, impaired short-term memory and concentration. Dilation of pupils, fever, sweating, nausea, vomiting. High doses can cause a headache. On some occasions, users experience sensations that are enjoyable. On other occasions, users can experience terrifying thoughts; anxiety; and fears of insanity, death, or loss of control. Long-term effects of some users include “flashbacks,” or hallucinogen persisting perception disorder (HPPD), which are reoccurrences of hallucinations long after ingesting the drug. The causes of these effects, which in some users occur after a single experience with the drug, are not known.

Source: DEA

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Commercial and Street Names of Psilocybin

Caps, sherm, magic mushrooms, mushrooms, psilocin, shrooms, hippieflip (mushrooms and ecstasy), flower flipping (ecstasy with mushrooms).

Description of Psilocybin

Psilocybin and psilocin are the hallucinogenic principles contained in certain mushrooms. Psilocybin is structurally similar to serotonin, and produces its effects by disrupting normal functioning of the serotonin system. Psilocybin looks like dried mushrooms. Frequently, psilocybin sold in Canada is actually PCP or LSD. Mushrooms are typically eaten or brewed and consumed as tea. Mushrooms can also be sniffed, smoked or injected. Mushroom powder is often mixed with fruit juice.

Effects of Psilocybin

Once ingested, mushrooms generally cause feelings of nausea before the desired mental effects appear. Effects felt after half an hour and last several hours. The high from using mushrooms is mild and may cause distorted perceptions of touch, sight, sound and taste. Other effects can include nervousness and paranoia. For long-term effects see Mescaline (above).

Source: DEA

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Description of STP/DOM/MDA

These are chemical variations of amphetamines and mescaline that are also classified as stimulants. Produced in clandestine labs. No medical use. DOM is nicknamed STP, acronym for “Serenity, Tranquility, and Peace.” Usually sold as white or off -white powder. Taken orally, sniff ed or injected. MDA is similar to MDMA (ecstasy). Usually brown or white powder sold loose, in capsules, or as amber liquid. Usually taken orally.

Effects of STP/DOM/MDA

STP or DOM may last 16 to 24 hours. Small doses produce mild euphoria, talkativeness; higher doses produce LSD like effects (see LSD). Adverse reactions may result in intense anxiety, panic and sometimes psychosis.

MDA effects occur within an hour and last up to 8 hours. Produces a sense of well-being and heightened emotions. Pupils dilate, nose and throat become dry. Higher doses effects similar to LSD. Overdose can cause death.

Source: Health Canada

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Commercial and Street Names
Death, Mitsubishi double stack, chicken yellow.

Description of PMA

PMA is usually sold in tablets or caplets containing beige, white or pink powder, usually misrepresented as MDA. Made in clandestine labs. No medical use. Looks similar to MDMA. PMA is typically taken orally. PMA powder, although uncommon, may be inhaled or injected.

Effects of PMA

Similar to MDA and mescaline, though far more toxic. Symptoms include laboured breathing, high fever, erratic eye movement, muscle spasms and vomiting. Moderate to high doses can lead to convulsions, coma and death. One of the most dangerous hallucinogens.

Long-term effects are unknown.

Source: DEA

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Commercial and Street Names

Businessman’s trip, businessman’s special, Dimitri, Fantasia, 45 minute psychosis, AMT, Businessman’s LSD, DET.

Description of DMT

A hallucinogenic tryptamine. Usually parsley is soaked in DMT, then dried and smoked. Can also be injected. Made in clandestine labs.

Effects of DMT

Similar effect to LSD, DOM and MDMA. Hallucinogenic effects last for about 45 to 60 minutes so the experience is called a “businessman’s trip.” Snorting hastens effect. May produce nausea, chills, trembling, cramps, muscle tension and shallow breathing in higher doses. Long-term effects are unknown.

Source: DEA

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13. 2C-B or DOB

Commercial and Street Names

2C-B is also known as 2-(4-Bromo-2,5 diethoxy-phenyl)-ethylamine, Nexus, bromo, toonies, herox, synergy, venus, spectrum, MFT, BDMPEA, banana split (combination of 2C-B with LSD), .party pack (2C-B with ecstasy), nexus flipping (2-CB with ecstasy).

Description of 2C-B and DOB

These are psychoactive or hallucinogenic compounds similar to mescaline. Produced in clandestine labs. In pure form, it is a powder, but also available as purple/red or white pills and in yellow capsules. Structurally similar to DOM. Has been sold as MDMA and LSD. Taken orally or snorted. No medical use. DOB is 4-bromo-2, 5-dimethoxyamphetamine.

Effects of 2C-B and DOB

DOB causes intense hallucinations. The most commonly reported unpleasant effects are nausea and vomiting. Others effects of DOB include diarrhea, gas, delirium, muscle tension and spasms, headaches, increased heartbeat, raised blood pressure, confusion or disorientation and inability to concentrate.

2C-B has been reported to cause confusion, cardiovascular disturbances, and dehydration.

Long-term effects of both 2C-B or DOB are unknown.

Source: DEA

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Commercial and Street Names

Dex, robo, DM, velvet, skittles, triple C, tussin.

Description of DXM

DXM is a cough-suppressing ingredient found in a variety of over-the counter cold and cough medications. Available as a syrup, tablet or gel cap. DXM can also be purchased in powder form, often over the internet. Usually swallowed.

Effects of DXM

At higher doses, dextromethorphan produces dissociative effects similar to PCP and Ketamine (see the PCP section for more information). Long-term effects include liver damage due to the consumption of large quantities of acetaminophen.

Source: DEA

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Additional printed resources on hallucinogens is available in the LSD section and Ecstasy section.

General Information on Hallucinogens

Ketamine: Dreams and Realities (2004) covers all the aspects of Ketamine from pharmacology to its use in raves. A useful reference for clinicians, researchers, and the general public. Karl Jansen

The Little Book of Ketamine (1999) describes the recreational and spiritual use of ketamine including what it is, how it is made, how it is used, how it affects the brain, safety precautions, testimonials of ketamine users, and the law. Kit Kelly.

Ketamine: Dangerous Hallucinogen (Drug Abuse & Society: Cost to a Nation) (2006) describes the history of ketamine, why it became a popular party drug, how it works, and its side effects. Brad Lockwood

History of Hallucinogens

The Sacred Mushroom Seeker: Tributes to R. Gordon Wasson (1997) is a biography of mycologist R. Gordon Wasson. His work on hallucinogenic mushrooms in the 1950s brought increased scholarly attention to the importance of spiritual life of indigenous peoples. Terence McKenna.

Research on Hallucinogens

Trips: How Hallucinogens Work in Your Brain (1998) is neuroscience for a general audience. Cheryl Pellerin.

Prevention and Hallucinogens

LSD, PCP, and Hallucinogen Drug Dangers (2004) is written for adolescents about the dangers of hallucinogen misuse and abuse, and resisting peer pressure. Judy Monroe.

Peyote and Magic Mushrooms (1995) is a workbook for students that includes possible consequences, the dangers of addiction, damage to the mind and body, and increased likelihood of violent behavior. Sandra Lee Smith

Treatment and Hallucinogens

The Official Patient’s Sourcebook on Ketamine Dependence: A Revised and Updated Directory for the Internet Age (2002) is a resource guide for individuals who utilize education as part of their treatment program. Also a useful resource for clinicians. Icon Health Publications
The Official Patient’s Sourcebook on Dextromethorphan Dependence: A Revised and Updated Directory for the Internet Age (2002) is for patients who have education and Internet-based research as part of the treatment process. Icon Health Publications  

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Additional online resources on hallucinogens is available in the LSD section and Ecstasy section.

Websites Specific to Club Drugs and Hallucinogens

2C-B and Hallucinogens

4-Bromo-2,5-Dimethoxyphenethylamine (May 2013) Drug Enforcement Administration.

2C-I and Hallucinogens

4-Iodo-2,5-Dimethoxyphenethylamine (May 2013) Drug Enforcement Administration.

2C-T-7 and Hallucinogens

2,5-Dimethoxy-4-(n)-Propylthiophenethylamine (May 2013) Drug Enforcement Administration.

5-MeO-DIPT and Hallucinogens

5-MeO-DIPT is also known by street names foxy or foxy methoxy.

5-Methoxy-N,N-Diisopropyltryptamine (April 2013) Drug Enforcement Administration.

Bromo and Hallucinogens

See the 2C-B section.

DMT and Hallucinogens

DMT Journal Articles & Abstracts Erowid Vault

N,N-Dimethyltryptamine (January 2013) Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

N,N-DMT Erowid Vault

History of DMT (July 2006) Erowid

Psychotria Viridis – A Botanical Source of Dimethyltryptamine (DMT) reveals that these leaves are exported from Peru and sold on the Internet. Erowid

DXM and Hallucinogens

DXM Erowid Vault

DXM Drug Guide contains basic information on DXM. Partnership for a Drug-Free America.

Dextromethorphan includes pharmacology, indications, adverse reactions and interactions, contraindications and cautions, risk groups, and references.

Dextromethorphan – Drug and Human Performance Fact Sheets National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Emergency Department Visits Involving Dextromethorphan (2006) The Dawn Report, Issue 32.

Preventing Teen Cough Medicine Abuse is a pamphlet for parents. Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA).

Make Up Your Own Mind About Cough Medicine has personal testimonials about the use of DXM. The Partnership for a Drug Free America.

Misuse of Over-the-Counter Cough and Cold Medications Among Persons Ages 12 to 25 (January 2008) highlights the prevalence of OTC cough or cold medication use in the United States. National Survey on Drug Use and Health. The NSDUH Report.

Report 1 of the Council on Scientific Affairs (December 2004) presents the medical/scientific literature on this subject. American Medical Association (AMA).

Stop Cough Medicine Abuse was created by the leading makers of OTC cough medicines and its trade association, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) to alert communities and educate parents about a growing problem: the intentional abuse of cough medicines among teens.

What Every Parent Should Know About Cough Medicine Abuse (October 2006) is a series of questions for parents about DXM and other cough medicines. The Partnership for a Drug Free America.

Ibogaine and Hallucinogens

Ibogaine is a plant with hallucinogenic effects. Claimed by some to cure heroin addiction. A controlled substance in the United States.

Ibogaine (August 2007) Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Ketamine, Impaired Driving and Hallucinogens

Ketamine – Drugs and Human Performance Fact Sheets (April 2004) is a detailed fact sheet on effects of ketamine use, particularly on performance and driving. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Nexus and Hallucinogens

See the 2C-B section.

Psilocybin (Mushrooms) and Hallucinogens

The Basics: Psilocybin (February 2005) provides basic information on magic mushrooms including effects. Addiction Foundation of Manitoba (AFM).

Research and Hallucinogens

NIDA Research Report: Hallucinogens and Dissociative Drugs (March 2001) includes research on LSD, PCP, Ketamine, and Dextromethorphan (DXM). National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). NIH Publication 01-4209.

Rise in Hallucinogenic Use(October 1997) covers the history of hallucinogenic use in the United States, a comparison of past and present user groups, and the impact of today’s use and distribution patterns on law enforcement and public health and safety. US Department of Justice, National Institute of Justice.

For additional research on hallucinogens refer to the Ecstasy, Other Club Drugs, & Other Hallucinogens section provided by the Office of Applied Studies, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

DXM and Hallucinogens

Cough and Cold Medicine Abuse (May 2007) is for parents to understand the risks and know how to prevent their kids from overdosing on cough and cold medicines. KindsHealth for Parents.

DXM (March 2014) Drug Enforcement Administration.

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Additional video resources on hallucinogens is available in the LSD section and Ecstasy section.

Video Resources – Educational Videos on Hallucinogens

Ketamine is profiled in the UK television documentary. BBC News.

Through the K-Hole is a radio documentary. BBC Radio 1.

Video Resources – Movies on Hallucinogens

Warning: Viewer discretion is advised. Some may find the following film(s) glorify the use of hallucinogens:

Easy Rider (1969)
Directed by Dennis Hopper
Actors: Peter Fonda as Wyatt, Dennis Hopper as Billy, Jack Nicholson as George Hanson

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