Psychedelic-Assisted Group Therapy: A Systematic Review

J Psychoactive Drugs. Apr-Jun 2019;51(2):174-188. doi: 10.1080/02791072.2019.1593559. Epub 2019 Apr 5.


Contemporary research with classic psychedelic drugs (e.g., lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and psilocybin) is indebted to the twentieth-century researchers and clinicians who generated valuable clinical knowledge of these substances through experimentation. Several recent reviews that highlight the contributions of this early literature have focused on psychedelic-assisted individual psychotherapy modalities. None have attempted to systematically identify and compile experimental studies of psychedelic-assisted group therapy. In therapeutic settings, psychedelics were often used to enhance group therapy for a variety of populations and clinical indications. We report on the results of a systematic review of the published literature in English and Spanish on psychedelic-assisted group therapies. Publications are characterized by their clinical approach, experimental method, and clinical outcomes. Given the renewed interest in the clinical use of psychedelic medicines, this review aims to stimulate hypotheses to be tested in future research on psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, group process, and interpersonal functioning.

Keywords: LSD; Psychedelic; group therapy; hallucinogen; psilocybin; psychotherapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Hallucinogens / administration & dosage*
  • Humans
  • Lysergic Acid Diethylamide / administration & dosage
  • Psilocybin / administration & dosage
  • Psychotherapy / methods*
  • Psychotherapy, Group / methods*


  • Hallucinogens
  • Psilocybin
  • Lysergic Acid Diethylamide