Illicit Drugs: Albert Hofmann And Lsd

1533 words - 6 pages

Most people do not think about all the things in this world that an individual can use that could potentially cause self harm. According to an article published by CNN, there are more than 22 million illicit drug users in the United States alone. Starting from the age of 12, individuals try marijuana, cocaine, heroin, hallucinogens, inhalants and prescription drugs. A large number of these drugs are misused daily but their original means for creation was to aid health issues. However, because there are addictive qualities associated with the drugs; they tend to change their users completely. LSD is a hallucinogenic drug created in 1938 to aid in psychiatric therapies. It was later found that the drug caused hallucinations and thus became a substance that was used for recreational purposes. Gaining its popularity in the in the 1960’s, LSD was proven to cause many different effects to the brain and body and though it has died off in the recent years, its affect on music may make it become more prevalent in the present.
November 16th, 1938 was when LSD was first synthesized by Swiss chemist, Albert Hofmann (LSD: A Short History). Working for Sandoz Pharmaceutical in Basel, Switzerland, he was tasked with finding a medical use for ergot, a fungus that grows on rye bread (LSD History). Derived from the fungus was lysergic acid which gave leeway to Hofmann’s studies. From the acid, Hofmann created multiple variations of the drug that lowered blood pressure and improved elderly brain function (LSD History). However, when he created LSD-25 (lysergic acid diethylamide) no real results had shown in improving health. Looking furthering into drug some time later, Hofmann accidentally ingested it, causing him to have hallucinations unknowingly after leaving work. In the following days after his initial encounter with the drug, Hofmann did further tests on animals and individuals within the science community. Those who he tested in the Sandoz Company found the effects of LSD to be amazing. It became patented and marketed to be sold as Delysid in 1947 (LSD History). The use of the drug was highly recommended by Hofmann and the Sandoz Company. It was used by psychiatrists and mental hospitals all across the country to give doctors a better perspective of the minds of their sick patients.
The large distribution of LSD through the scientific community made it seems though the drug had no side effects other than seeing the world in a completely different light, however, the drug was more dangerous than people were lead to believe. Because the symptoms of the drug were so unpredictable, the users were often unaware of what to expect. Since it is taken orally with either absorbent paper, gelatin, or in pill form, the drug is easily absorbed into the blood stream and metabolized by the liver, causing it to take effect fairly quickly (LSD (drug)). Being one of the most potent mood-changing chemicals, LSD causes the user to have rapid alterations in personality and...

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