February 7, 2024 updated by: Carolyn Rodriguez

MDMA-Assisted Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) Compared With Methamphetamine-Assisted CBT in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD): A Phase II Study

The study assesses the safety and preliminary effectiveness of MDMA-assisted cognitive behavioral therapy in participants diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).

Study Overview

Detailed Description

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a chronic and disabling disorder that costs the economy over $2 billion annually and represents a significant public health problem. The proposed projects tests whether 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) reduces OCD symptoms.

Study Type


Enrollment (Estimated)



  • Phase 2

Contacts and Locations

This section provides the contact details for those conducting the study, and information on where this study is being conducted.

Study Contact

Participation Criteria

Researchers look for people who fit a certain description, called eligibility criteria. Some examples of these criteria are a person's general health condition or prior treatments.

Eligibility Criteria

Ages Eligible for Study

18 years and older (Adult, Older Adult)

Accepts Healthy Volunteers



Inclusion Criteria:

  1. At least 18 years old
  2. Fluent in speaking and reading the predominantly used or recognized language of the study site
  3. Able to swallow pills
  4. Meet the criteria for OCD diagnosis
  5. YBOCS total score of at least 16
  6. Not on psychotropic medications 1 month prior to study enrollment
  7. Able to tolerate a treatment-free period
  8. Able to tolerate study procedures
  9. Failed at least 1 prior trial of standard first-line OCD treatment
  10. Agree to the following lifestyle modifications: comply with requirements for fasting and refraining from certain medications prior to the Experimental Session, not enroll in any other interventional clinical trials during the duration of the study, and commit to medication dosing, therapy, and study procedures.

Exclusion Criteria:

  1. Pregnant or nursing, or able to become pregnant and are not practicing an effective means of birth control
  2. Weigh less than 48 kilograms (kgs)
  3. Any current problem which, in the opinion of the investigator or study physician, might interfere with participation

Study Plan

This section provides details of the study plan, including how the study is designed and what the study is measuring.

How is the study designed?

Design Details

  • Primary Purpose: Treatment
  • Allocation: Randomized
  • Interventional Model: Parallel Assignment
  • Masking: Quadruple

Arms and Interventions

Participant Group / Arm
Intervention / Treatment
Experimental: MDMA-assisted cognitive behavioral therapy
Administration of 80mg MDMA HCl (with a supplemental dose offered 1.5 to 2 hours later of 40 mg MDMA HCl) in combination with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).
MDMA (3,4 methylenedioxymethamphetamine) is a synthetic, psychoactive drug that is chemically similar to the stimulant methamphetamine.
Other Names:
  • MDMA
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy with exposure and response prevention performed by therapist team.
Active Comparator: Methamphetamine-assisted cognitive behavioral therapy
Administration of 10mg methamphetamine (with a supplemental dose offered 1.5 to 2 hours later of 5 mg methamphetamine) in combination with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy with exposure and response prevention performed by therapist team.
Methamphetamine is a stimulant that affects the central nervous system. This is used as a control in the study.
Other Names:
  • MA

What is the study measuring?

Primary Outcome Measures

Outcome Measure
Measure Description
Time Frame
Chnage in the severity of OCD symptoms as measured by the Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (YBOCS)
Time Frame: Baseline (Visit 1) to End of Intervention (Visit 13), up to 2 weeks
Change in OCD severity is measured by the YBOCS (Yale Brown Obsessive-Compulsive Scale), a gold standard measure of obsessions and compulsions. For the YBOCS the minimum units are 0 and Maximum units on the total scale are 40. The higher the number on the YBOCS, the more severe the symptoms. Response is defined as at least a 35% reduction on the YBOCS.
Baseline (Visit 1) to End of Intervention (Visit 13), up to 2 weeks

Collaborators and Investigators

This is where you will find people and organizations involved with this study.


  • Principal Investigator: Carolyn Rodriguez, MD, PhD, Stanford University

Publications and helpful links

The person responsible for entering information about the study voluntarily provides these publications. These may be about anything related to the study.

Study record dates

These dates track the progress of study record and summary results submissions to Study records and reported results are reviewed by the National Library of Medicine (NLM) to make sure they meet specific quality control standards before being posted on the public website.

Study Major Dates

Study Start (Estimated)

May 1, 2024

Primary Completion (Estimated)

December 1, 2026

Study Completion (Estimated)

December 1, 2026

Study Registration Dates

First Submitted

March 13, 2023

First Submitted That Met QC Criteria

March 13, 2023

First Posted (Actual)

March 24, 2023

Study Record Updates

Last Update Posted (Actual)

February 8, 2024

Last Update Submitted That Met QC Criteria

February 7, 2024

Last Verified

February 1, 2024

More Information

Terms related to this study

Plan for Individual participant data (IPD)

Plan to Share Individual Participant Data (IPD)?


Drug and device information, study documents

Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated drug product


Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated device product


This information was retrieved directly from the website without any changes. If you have any requests to change, remove or update your study details, please contact As soon as a change is implemented on, this will be updated automatically on our website as well.

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