This presentation will review findings and implications from FDA-approved research with the naturally occurring psychedelic compound psilocybin. The NYU School of Medicine clinical trial demonstrated efficacy of a single psilocybin-generated mystical experience in helping individuals with cancer cultivate meaning, enhance existential and psycho-spiritual well-being, and foster a greater acceptance of the dying process with less anxiety. The landmark 2016 findings of a rapid decrease in depression, anxiety, hopelessness, and demoralization along with improvements in spiritual well-being will be presented. A review of existential distress in end-of-life care will be presented along with a review of the phenomenology of mystical experience and the implications for the study of meaning, spirituality and consciousness research.
- Participants will be able to identify factors and symptoms in existential and psycho-spiritual distress in palliative and end-of-life care.
- Participants will be able to recognize the importance of meaning and transcendence in end-of-life distress and in psychedelic research.
- Participants will be able to describe the characteristics of mystical experience; summarize the scientific findings from current psilocybin cancer anxiety research.
- Participants will be able to identify clinical implications from psychedelic research for palliative/hospice care.