PCP (Phencyclidine): History notes
Last modified: Saturday, 20. June 2009 - 2:49 pm
History of PCP development and use
PCP was first developed in 1926 as an anesthetic to be used in surgery. Early on, the drug showed promise because it appeared to produces anesthesia without depressing breathing or heart rates. Still, lingering questions about safety and effectiveness meant it was largely ignored until 1957.
In 1958 the Parke-Davis pharmaceutical company synthesized and patented PCP and tested it further on animals. Studies revealed that moderate doses had a stimulant effect and higher doses had depressant effect. After some further testing on humans, Parke-Davis began selling the drug as a general anesthetic called Sernyl.
Once Sernyl started to be used as an anesthetic, problems with the drug arose. People waking up from Sernyl sometimes had very disturbing side effects that included horrible nightmares, delusions, hallucinations, agitation, delirium, disorientation, and difficulty speaking. Because of these side effects, PCP use in humans ceased in 1965. Instead, it was sold as a veterinary anesthetic under the brand name Sernylan.
PCP was withdrawn completely from the market in 1978 because more and more people were abusing it illegally on the street. As street use of the drug increased, so did the disturbing stories of the bizarre and dangerous behavior PCP can provoke. Since 1978, there has been no legal Therapeutic use of PCP.
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