Study Reports Evidence for Ibogaine as a Treatment for Traumatic Brain Injury

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A new study involving veterans reported beneficial effects of ibogaine as a therapeutic treatment.

A recently published study explored ibogaine as a potential treatment option for traumatic brain injury (TBI) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PSTD) (1). The study, titled “Magnesium–ibogaine therapy in veterans with traumatic brain injuries,” was published in the journal Nature Medicine on January 5, 2024, and was conducted by a research team at Stanford University (1). Ibogaine, a plant-based psychoactive, is currently a Schedule I substance (1,2).

For this study, 30 male Special Operations Forces veterans with mild TBI received the ibogaine treatment (1). Grants from Veterans Exploring Treatment Solutions (VETS), a nonprofit organization advocating for solutions to ending veteran suicide with the help of psychedelic treatments, provided transportation for the participants (2). Because ibogaine is associated with cardiac issues, magnesium was administered to lessen ibogaine’s effect on the heart (1). According to the study, there were no serious side effects of the treatment (1).


“Veterans are on the front line of our national defense, but here they are on the front line of cutting-edge research that has the potential to help millions of people—both in and out of uniform,” stated Amber Capone, Co-Founder and CEO of VETS in a press release (2). “We remain laser-focused and dedicated to our mission of supporting access to psychedelic-assisted therapies for veterans and advancing research into their safety and efficacy. Our collaboration with Stanford University and Dr. Williams is a major step forward in proving the potential of ibogaine for treating PTSD and TBI.”

The participants received the treatment from Ambio Life Services, a clinic in Mexico, and showed significant reductions in their symptoms of PTSD, anxiety, and depression, both immediately and one month after the treatment (1,2).

The study, involving a single treatment drug for TBI symptoms, was reportedly possibly the first of its kind (1). As the study was not randomized and controlled and of a small sample size, the authors called for larger replications of this study to confirm the results (1).


  1. Cherian, K. N.; Keynan, J. N.; Anker, L.; Faerman, A.; Brown, R. E.; Shamma, A.; Keynan, O.; Coetzee, J. P.; Batail, J.-M.; Phillips, A.; et al. Magnesium–ibogaine therapy in veterans with traumatic brain injuries. Nature Medicine 2024 DOI: 10.1038/s41591-023-02705-w.
  2. Veterans Exploring Treatment Solutions (VETS) Grant Recipients Participate in Groundbreaking Stanford Study on Ibogaine Treatment for PTSD and TBI. Cision PRWeb. January 5, 2024.