What is it?

Hallucinogen persisting perception disorder (HPPD) refers to a continuation of sensations after using hallucinogenic drugs. Hallucinogenic drugs include LSD, MDMA (ecstasy) and magic mushrooms. While using them, the person’s sensory perception is altered causing what we call a trip. Some people may experience flashbacks that are the effect of the hallucinogens days, weeks, or even years after using these drugs. These flashbacks could be pleasant and enjoyable, or appear as visual effects only such as halos, distorted sizes or colors and bright lights.

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Signs & symptoms

Symptoms may include visual disturbances such as intensified colors, flashes of colors, color confusion, size confusion, halos around objects, seeing geometric patterns, tracers or trailers of an image or objects, difficulty reading, and feeling uneasy. People with HPPD may also experience anxiety, panic disorders, depersonalization and derealization, and suidical thoughts.


Diagnosis is based upon findings from medical history and physical examination. Further evaluation may include laboratory tests, brain imaging and EEG to exclude other causes. A psychiatric evaluation may be recommended.


Not much is known regarding HPPD treatment. Some suggest medications such as antiepileptic medications. Also, therapy is recommended.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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