Imagine a drug that can “wipe away single, specific memories while leaving other memories intact.” That would be quite a drug, wouldn’t it?

Well, according to both this article and the U.K.’s Telegraph, researchers have found this non-existent drug in propranolol (Inderal), a commonly …

5 Comments to
New Drug Doesn’t Delete Bad Memories

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  1. There was a “60 Minutes” on this drug. They highlighted a couple of uncontrolled studies and what was shown was that the emotions associated with the memory were softened. This even worked for one woman in her 40’s who was raped as a 12 year old. So apparently it’s not just physiological symptoms, but more study needs to be done.

    I think however, that it is very dangerous to mess with memory in any way. It gives me the creeps.

  2. I heard about this on the radio. With the controlled experiment described above, we can’t even assume that the drug is what decreased physiological stress symptoms. If a person describes the trauma one week and then the next uses script imagery, it’s possible there will be less stress the second week when the subject has already talked about the trauma at least once and the subject is more familiar and comfortable with surroundings and the person they talk to. No mention is given to the control group who were given a placebo and underwent all the other conditions as well.

  3. There are about a dozen ways an experiment like this could be improved. The fact it even got published was a bit surprising to me.

    The fact that some “news” organizations turn around and make up stuff related to the study is what’s really astounding to me.

  4. I totally agree, it’s irresponsible reporting. Even at the BBC, the initial headline was ‘Scientists can erase bad memories’ (since changed to ‘Drug can dampen down bad memories’). Via Mind Hacks.

  5. Well, I for one would like to wait and see. My T mentioned this to me and he said it is still being looked at. But he was excited about it.

    The important word here is ‘studied’. As with anything that comes out of a reporter’s mouth, take it with a grain of salt.

    I listen to my T though, he isn’t a reporter and researched more than headlines on this drug. So, I’ll remain optimistic that just maybe there is hope for me.

  6. Here’s my experience with Inderal and bad memories — I’ve suffered with anxiety disorder for the last 47 years — the trigger was my father’s sudden death when I was 13. For years I suffered without any help (there wasn’t any) until I was prescribed Xanax and Inderal in the late 80’s. Being a Rheumatic Fever survivor, the Inderal helps my heart which suffered slight damage from the RF. I hate taking pills, so I eventually stopped the Inderal, but kept it on hand. After the “stops bad memories” thing, I tried it again, and it seems to help my anxiety almost as much as the Xanax, in fact, I take less Xanax when taking Inderal. My dosage is very low for the Inderal, and I always try to take as little Xanax as is absolutely necessary. It will NOT wipe your brain clean of the memories, but it does keep the brain from revisiting them over and over. When the Inderal wears off, the memories are still there, just as fresh as ever, but for heaven’s sake! here’s a medication that for me a very low dose helps with anxiety, decreases the necessity for Xanax, helps my heart rhythm, cuts down on headaches and gives me no side effects taken in this small amount. Did I mention my blood pressure stays level also? It doesn’t “wipe” out my memories, nor does it alter my ability to make logical decisions. What it does do, is help me not to dwell on the past and contiually revisit the agony. Just like everyone, I’ve had other painful situations in life, but with a pre-existing anxiety disorder, the memories layer, one on the other and it becomes too much. Compared to Xanax, and all the anti-depression meds so many people are on, Inderal is infinitely less dangerous, when used correctly. When my anxiety is under control I can think logically, stop dwelling on the past, and lead a much more productive life. It works for me. The fear about Inderal “wiping your brain clean” needs debunking. I don’t think there’s anything that can do that. Inderal does what medication is supposed to do — it helps us to live better, healthier lives. I’m so glad this benefit from Inderal was discovered — it’s a Godsend.

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