A case of severe psychosis induced by novel recreational drugs

Lucio Oldani, Filippo Dragogna, Massimiliano Buoli, A. Carlo Altamura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: The use of novel recreational drugs is becoming of public interest, especially after recent international alerts about their cardiovascular and neurological toxicity. Additionally, little is known about the psychiatric consequences of the long-term use of these compounds. Case presentation: We describe a case of severe psychotic episode likely induced by chronic use of a combination of new recreational drugs (methylenedioxypyrovalerone, mephedrone, butylone and alpha-pyrrolidinopentiophenone). The patient had no psychiatric history and showed poor response to conventional antipsychotic treatment (haloperidol). Conclusions: This case illustrates the potential negative effects of recreational drugs that cannot be limited to an acute psychotic episode but might determine a condition of prolonged paranoid psychosis. Although the use of these compounds is currently increasing, such molecules might often pass undetected in patients accessing the emergency room, leading to misdiagnosis (e.g. schizophrenic episode) and lack of appropriate treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jan 22 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)

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