Will ‘Super Ecstasy’ Flood the US Next?
Para-Methoxyamphetamine (PMA) is a hallucinogenic amphetamine derivative that affects the nervous system, altering both cognition and perception. Also known as “super ecstasy,” the drug is a highly potent stimulant that causes extreme disruption and hyperactivity within the brain.
Don’t let the name fool you; PMA is not the same thing as ecstasy or MDMA. The problem is that a number of drug dealers are selling PMA and passing it off as ecstasy. So far, this misrepresentation has cost more than 50 lives.
Up to this point, PMA-related deaths have generally been isolated to areas of Scotland, Australia, and the U.K. Though the dangers of super ecstasy have received very little media coverage, the drug has already claimed multiple lives in the United States. What’s more, experts predict that number will grow.
Why is Super Ecstasy so Dangerous?
What makes super ecstasy unique is that no one initially sets out to use it. Users think they have purchased and taken ecstasy. PMA is 20 times stronger than MDMA, so its effects will be much more intense. Side effects and outcomes generally depend on dosage amounts. Those include:
- Low doses produce minor visual hallucinations, mild euphoria, and an energy boost.
- Moderate doses produce a sudden increase in blood pressure, body temperature, pulse rate, muscle spasms, and a sick feeling after taking super ecstasy.
- High doses produce labored breathing, erratic eye movements, nausea, and vomiting. When high enough, the dose can produce fevers up to 108 degrees, intracranial hemorrhage, convulsions, coma, and death.
It’s also important to understand that the initial effects of super ecstasy may not be felt for a while. According to researchers, it takes about 30 minutes for PMA to kick in. This delayed response leaves many users believing they’ve purchased weak ecstasy. Looking for a better high, they take another dose. This simple confusion is enough to prove fatal.
Super Ecstasy Claims Lives
The effects of super ecstasy are completely unpredictable and can easily result in death. For example, in the mid-west portion of the United States, three people were killed after taking what they thought was MDMA. Each showed signs of extreme agitation and gradually progressed to severe hyperthermia, convulsions, and hemorrhage.
The victims (two males ages 19 and 24 and a female age 18) were tested for the presence of drugs and alcohol. Physicians were astonished to find all three victims tested positive for high levels of amphetamine and PMA. What’s more, no MDMA was found in any of these cases.
What You Need to Know
The easiest way to avoid the adverse effects of super ecstasy is to avoid purchasing or using MDMA. While the side effects of PMA can be properly managed in a medical setting, treatment must be sought early. Waiting too long can end in tragedy.
If you or someone you love needs help with drug abuse, call our toll-free helpline at and speak to a recovery advisor today.