MDMA: interactions with other psychoactive drugs

Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2011 Oct;99(4):759-74. doi: 10.1016/j.pbb.2011.06.032. Epub 2011 Jul 5.


3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, ecstasy) is one of the most widely abused illegal drugs. Some users self-report euphoria and an increased perception and feeling of closeness to others. When taken in warm environments, MDMA users may develop acute complications with potential fatal consequences. In rodents, MDMA increases locomotor activity and, depending on ambient temperature, may produce a dose-dependent, potentially lethal hyperthermia. Like most other recreational drugs, MDMA is frequently taken in combination with other substances including tobacco, EtOH, marijuana, amphetamines, cocaine and, caffeine. Although polydrug use is very common, the understanding of the effects of this multiple substance use, as well as the analysis of consequences of different drug-drug associations, received rather little attention. The purpose of this review is to summarize our current knowledge about the changes on MDMA-related behavior, pharmacology, and neurotoxicity associated with co-consumption of other drugs of abuse and psychoactive agents.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amphetamine / pharmacology
  • Amphetamine-Related Disorders / psychology
  • Animals
  • Caffeine / pharmacology
  • Cannabis
  • Central Nervous System Depressants
  • Cocaine / pharmacology
  • Drug Interactions
  • Ethanol / pharmacology
  • Hallucinogens / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • N-Methyl-3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine / pharmacology*
  • Nicotine / pharmacology
  • Psychotropic Drugs / pharmacology
  • Substance-Related Disorders / epidemiology


  • Central Nervous System Depressants
  • Hallucinogens
  • Psychotropic Drugs
  • Caffeine
  • Ethanol
  • Nicotine
  • Amphetamine
  • Cocaine
  • N-Methyl-3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine