A preliminary investigation of ibogaine: case reports and recommendations for further study

J Subst Abuse Treat. Jul-Aug 1994;11(4):379-85. doi: 10.1016/0740-5472(94)90049-3.


A naturally occurring substance, ibogaine, was taken by seven individuals who were addicted to opiates. Ibogaine, an alkaloid with psychotropic effects at doses of 200-300 mg and above, was taken in single doses of 700-1800 mg by the subjects in the study. At the end of the 24-38-hr psychoactive period induced by the drug at these doses, none of the subjects displayed significant opiate withdrawal symptoms. At the lowest dose of 700 mg, one subject recontinued his drug abuse after 2 days; of the remaining six individuals who took 1,000 mg or above, two relapsed after a number of weeks, one reverted to intermittent heroin use, and three appear to have remained drug-free 14 weeks or more after undergoing this experimental treatment. Ibogaine may be of value in the present and could serve as a model for the development of improved agents for the treatment of substance abuse in the future.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alcoholism / psychology
  • Alcoholism / rehabilitation*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Female
  • Heroin Dependence / psychology
  • Heroin Dependence / rehabilitation*
  • Humans
  • Ibogaine / adverse effects
  • Ibogaine / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Methadone / adverse effects
  • Methadone / therapeutic use*
  • Substance Abuse Detection
  • Substance Withdrawal Syndrome / drug therapy*


  • Ibogaine
  • Methadone