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Author Topic: Can drugs erase bad memories?  (Read 4623 times)

@nsbuk001

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« on: 27/11/2010 17:30:02 »
@nsbuk001 asked the Naked Scientists:
   
I heard on 5live today there may be drugs to get rid of bad memories. Sounds unlikely. So how smart are these pills?

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 27/11/2010 17:30:02 by _system »


 

Offline Belle LeStein

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« Reply #1 on: 28/11/2010 17:29:36 »
Hey I saw this report as well so I will be interested to see what they say with some further research.  There are amnestic drugs in use already as part of some pre-surgical procedures and also as part of local anesthesia for certain procedures.  I know I had to get an epidural once and I was so scared of that needle that one was used on me so I would relax and forget the whole experience.  This particular class of drug resides in the family of benzodiazepines which include midazolam and flunitrazepam.  Given that medicine already utilizes drugs that have a profound affect on memory, it seems plausible that they can theoretically develop a chemical which somehow reacts with what we would call bad memories.  Different thoughts and memories can trigger various portions of the brain, (bad memories often triggering sympathetic regions of the brain in this case).

I will be interested to see how this develops further in the future.
 

Offline benjaminlanglois

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« Reply #2 on: 04/12/2010 15:27:06 »
I have heard something about this recently; personally, I would be very cautious of such claims by the media - they do have a habit of over-hyping the potential of early experimentation. I cannot think of any reasons why it would not be possible to achieve such a memory-erasing technique however I expect to wait quite a while before any major breakthroughs are achieved.
 

Offline racyhall11

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« Reply #3 on: 08/12/2010 07:54:06 »
Yes it is right that BAD memories could be erased using a drug commonly prescribed for high blood pressure. At the time of it they are  reconsolidated in the brain. The scientists are doing practical with drugs on animal and the results are same our problem. So we can say that drugs Can erase bad memories.
 

Offline CliffordK

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« Reply #4 on: 08/12/2010 08:09:06 »
As with the surgery, the amnesic drugs must be administered at the time of the surgery, or possibly shortly thereafter.

I would assume that it could be administered immediately after a traumatic event such as an automobile accident or a rape.  But, the ethics of such a usage would have to be carefully considered.  And, the memory loss may not be complete.

I don't believe any such drugs can affect distant memories such as childhood abuse, and doing so would be extremely controversial, and likely very dangerous.
 

cat_with_no_eyes

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« Reply #5 on: 08/12/2010 20:55:37 »
Isnt that counselling? Bad memories cant simply be 'erased', we just learn to live with them.
 

SteveFish

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« Reply #6 on: 10/12/2010 03:32:14 »
Cat_with_no_eyes. I think you are right. It seems to me that if I erased all my bad memories I would go back to being just as stupid as I was when I hadn't yet achieved consciousness at around the age of 20. Steve
 

Offline RD

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« Reply #7 on: 10/12/2010 17:34:31 »
I would assume that it could be administered immediately after a traumatic event such as an automobile accident or a rape. 

That would rather handicap the judicial system.
 

Offline CliffordK

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« Reply #8 on: 11/12/2010 04:58:45 »
I would assume that it could be administered immediately after a traumatic event such as an automobile accident or a rape. 
That would rather handicap the judicial system.

Sacrifice a person's future...  so Lawyers can get rich!!!
Of course, one can't let a person repeatedly do the same thing, but our legal system has gotten out of control.

People do it to some extent to themselves with Alcohol.
And...  Rohypnol is anamnestic benzodiazepine which is one of the reasons why it is so problematic as a "date rape drug". 
 

Offline chris

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« Reply #9 on: 12/12/2010 22:34:59 »
I wrote this news article on the topic of pain memory erasure; however, the same agent being used (ZIP) can effectively erase any existing memory, not just pain...

http://www.thenakedscientists.com/HTML/content/news/news/2122/
 

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Can drugs erase bad memories?
« Reply #9 on: 12/12/2010 22:34:59 »

 

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