Atropine sold as ecstasy
Four brands of "ecstasy" were found in Holland to contain up to 5mg of a drug called Atropine (Atropine Sulphate), a prescription drug (used in 'Lomotil') that produces relaxation of muscles lining the intestine. It is used to relieve cramps and irritable bowel syndrome.
According to Peter Stafford's Psychedelics Encyclopedia (1992, p385), the name atropine is derived from Atropos - one of the three fates in Greek mythology - as a result of its being used as a poison during the Middle Ages. Where atropine is used therapeutically as an antispasmodic, the average dose is 0.5mg. Users have survived dosages of more than a gram, but the effects appear toxic in most cases of 10mg or more.
Stedman's medical dictionary describes overdose symptoms as: "Strange indescribable feelings with giddiness, yawning, staggering or falling on attempting to walk; dryness of mouth and throat, sense as of suffocation, swallowing difficult, voice husky; face at first pale later suffused with a scarlatiniform rash which extends to the body; pupils widely dilated; pulse, at first bounding and rapid, later becomes irregular and faint".
Alexander Shulgin gave a talk in London in 1994. He began by describing the the old Bureau of Narcotics schema which divided drugs into 'ups', 'downs' and 'stars'. Some drugs fall between these classifications and atropine was mentioned as one of these:
"...you get a further group between the downs (the depressants, the sedative hypnotics) and the stars. In this area materials remove you from the outside world but do not necessarily put you in an unconscious or non-feeling state. These are materials such as atropine, scopolamine, datura, pcp, ketamine, mandrake - hosts of compounds that in the pharmocological sense are called parasyntheparelitics. They give you a non-reflexive madriasis, you find yourself in a dream-state, sometimes an out of body state, sometimes a defused and not with good recall state, but this state can be truly hallucinogenic".
Pills found to contain Atropine:
Sitting Child (or sitting turtle) logo (facing). White flat pill scored on reverse, 9mm diam x 3.4mm thick
Alien (or monster) logo (rounded-triangular face with two slit eyes). White flat pill domed both sides, scored on reverse, 11mm x 3.4mm
Dagobert duck logo (head looking half right with big nose wearing high hat). Blue flat pill scored on reverse, 9mm x 3.3mm
Lamblek (or Lambic) logo (bald headed man's face with bow tie, full face). White flat pill scored on reverse, 10mm x 3.4mm
Dancing Child (or dancing turtle) logo. White flat pill scored on reverse. 9mm x 3.1mm.
Mario (man's face with moustache and cap). White flat pill scored on reverse. 10mm x 3.4mm.
Luigi (man's face, looking sideways, pointy chin, big nose, cap). White pill scored on reverse. 10mm x 3.4mm.
These pills are illustrated, with more information (in Dutch), on www.gabbersite.com
Nicholas Saunders 20 October 1997, revised 26/10/97, further revised 04/11/97, further revised 5/12/97