(History of MDMA) "MDMA is not a new drug. It was first synthesized by the German pharmaceutical firm Merck in 1912. Human experimentation, however, has been traced back to the early 1970s (Eisner, 1989; Shulgin, 1990)."
Alternative Analysis of the Relative Risk from MDMA Use: "Nutt et al. (2007) attempted to compare the relative dangers of the main types of psychosocial drug, using a series of subjective rating scales. Heroin and cocaine were graded as the two most harmful drugs, whereas Ecstasy/MDMA emerged as one of the least harmful (18th out of 20). Unfortunately, it was unclear how this low harm rating score for Ecstasy/MDMA was given, as they cited no empirical research studies or reviews. Instead, Nutt et al.
Prevalence of Ecstasy Use in US: According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, in the United States in 2015 among people aged 12 and older there were an estimated 18,328,000 lifetime users of MDMA, 2,560,000 past-year users, and 557,000 past-month users.
"Between 2008 and 2015, a total of 644 NPS had been reported by 102 countries and territories to the UNODC early warning advisory on NPS. The emergence of NPS was reported for the first time in 2015 in Kyrgyzstan and Mauritius. In 2015, the early warning advisory also registered the emergence of NPS in previous years in Belarus, Serbia, South Africa and Tajikistan. The majority of countries and territories that reported the emergence of NPS up to December 2015 were from Europe (41), followed by Asia (30), Africa (16), the Americas (13) and Oceania (2).
"The level of last year ecstasy use by adults aged 16 to 59 in the 2016/17 survey (1.3%, or around 439,000 people) was similar to the previous year (1.5%, or around 492,000 people). There have been small but statistically significant falls compared with a decade ago (1.8% in 2006/07) and the start of measurement by the survey in 1996 (1.7%). Generally, the proportion of 16 to 59 year olds using ecstasy in the last year has been relatively flat throughout the lifetime of the survey, fluctuating between one and two per cent since measurement began in 1996 (Figure 1.4).
Adulterants, Pill Testing, and Harm Reduction: Deaths from adulterated drugs are another consequence of a zero tolerance approach. The drug should be tested for purity to minimize the risk from adulterated drugs by those who consume it.
Adulteration and Impurities in Illegally-Manufactured Substances: One of the risks associated with Ecstasy is the possibility of obtaining adulterated drugs that may be more toxic than MDMA. Some of the reported deaths attributed to Ecstasy may likely caused by other, more dangerous drugs.
Dangers Posed by Dehydration and Overheating: Some of these deaths are related to overheating. MDMA slightly raises body temperature. This is potentially lethal in hot environments where there is vigorous dancing and the lack of adequate fluid replacement. Many of these tragic deaths are preventable with simple harm reduction techniques such as having free water available and rooms where people can rest and relax.