Estimated Prevalence of MDMA (Ecstasy) Use in the EU

"MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine) is commonly used in the form of ecstasy tablets, but is also increasingly available as crystals and powders; tablets are usually swallowed, but in powder form the drug is also snorted (nasal insufflation).
"In recent years, monitoring sources based in a number of countries have been signalling new developments within Europe’s MDMA market, including reports of increased use.
"Most European surveys have historically collected data on ecstasy rather than MDMA use, although this is now changing. It is estimated that 2.1 million young adults (15–34) used MDMA/ecstasy in the last year (1.7% of this age group), with national estimates ranging from 0.3% to 5.5%. Among young people using MDMA in the last year, the ratio of males to females is 2.4 to 1.
"Until recently, in many countries, MDMA prevalence has been on the decline from peak levels attained in the early to mid-2000s. This appears now to be changing. Among the countries that have produced new surveys since 2013, results point to an overall increase in Europe, with nine countries reporting higher estimates and three reporting lower estimates than in the previous comparable survey.
"Where data exist for a more robust analysis of trends in last year use of MDMA among young adults, increases are observed in some countries since 2010. Bulgaria, Finland and France all continue long-term upward trends over this period, while in the United Kingdom a break in 2011/2012 from a downward trend is followed by statistically significant increases (Figure 2.4). Though not directly comparable with earlier surveys, the Netherlands reports a prevalence of 5.5% in 2014."


European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (2016), European Drug Report 2016: Trends and Developments, Publications Office of the European Union, Luxembourg, pp. 42-43.