Studying Ibogaine and 5-MeO-DMT for Traumatic Brain Injuries
Amber Capone is the co-founder and Executive Director of Veterans Exploring Treatment Solutions (VETS), where she and her husband Marcus Capone have led a charge to help special forces veterans connect with psychedelic treatments. Marcus is an ex-Navy SEAL who experienced traumatic brain injury during his time in the military, and was only able to find lasting healing with ibogaine and 5-MeO-DMT.
Since then, Amber and Marcus have done their best to spread the word and raise money to help other veterans find effective treatments, and more recently, to encourage scientific study of these substances.
Amber, in our last interview you alluded to studies that your organization is involved in. Can you share some more details about that? Do these studies involve both ibogaine and 5-MeO-DMT?
Our first goal after Marcus’ therapy was for 12 other veterans to have a similar positive experience, and for those results to last for a 12 month period. That was easy. The second was to help 100 veterans and involve institutional review board (IRB) research. We did that and it was published in June of 2019.
The results were incredible. It was looking at suicidality, depression, substance use, and cognition. It was the first time, to my knowledge, that cognition was measured in a psychedelic study.
Psychedelics have historically been researched for other psychological issues such as anxiety, depression, addiction, and so on, but the cognition piece was really significant to me. I insisted that it be included in the measures, because that was one of the biggest takeaways for me after Marcus’ treatment.
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is the signature injury of both wars (Iraq and Afghanistan), yet it is not talked about that much because it can be very difficult to diagnose, let alone treat or cure. Generally veterans will get a bandaid PTSD diagnosis, and be prescribed a slew of medications. And in many cases, these medications compound the struggle and make things markedly more difficult for the veteran. Ibogaine for sale and 5-MeO-DMT for Traumatic Brain Injuries
Marcus at one point was on upwards of ten medications, and it seemed like as time went on, he would need a new medication to combat one of his existing medications, to combat the side effect of another medication, and so on. He was prescribed something to sleep, something to wake up, something for depression, something for mood- it was a nightmare. He was struggling cognitively to a point where he would forget to take these things, which could create a secondary nightmare because all the timing was off.
The TBI and brain component of veteran struggles is where our focus lies. We definitely believe that there are many veterans struggling with PTSD, and I’m not saying that special forces veterans don’t have PTSD, but we’re just choosing to put more of an emphasis on traumatic brain injury because this was so important for us and it remains largely unexplored.
The retrospective study that was released showed a very significant improvement in cognition, and 96% of the participants said it was far better than any previous treatment they had tried.