COMMUNITY FORUM: Ibogaine Safety
Christine Minanga Fitzsimmons, Jamie McAlpin, Clare S. Wilkins
Sunday, April 23, 2017 • 9:00 AM - 10:30 AM • Oakland Room
Ibogaine assisted drug detoxification, mood disorder treatment, or psychospiritual exploration is growing exponentially throughout the world, as well as in the underground in the United States and Europe, where it is not an approved medicine. With such rapid growth comes a greater chance for adverse events due to Iboga/ Ibogaine’s potentially cardiotoxic effects, as well as it’s tendency to catalyze intense psychological states. Strict screening, safe dosing and proper preparation can result in best practices and more successful outcomes. This community forum will discuss the most common and important challenges facing Ibogaine safety. A panel of ibogaine researchers and practitioners will present an interactive discussion of topics which are commonly seen.
Topics which will be discussed:
- Low or micro dosing can still cause cardiac arrest, as evidenced by two cases. Ingestion of Iboga/Ibogaine at any dose still warrants a cardiac health screening and monitoring.
- Ibogaine/Iboga taken to detoxify from benzodiazepines, alcohol or stimulants pose the greatest potential danger. These treatments can be done safely with specific precautions in place.
- Self administration of Ibogaine/Iboga and the risks associated.
- Iboga/Ibogaine bought online without analysis paperwork, the health risks and sustainability impact associated.
- The length of time which someone is in cardiac danger after their dose.
- Taking other psychedelics such as 5MEO-DMT or the frog venom of kambo, in close proximity to Ibogaine treatment.
- Cessation of pharmaceuticals before Ibogaine.
- Switching from long acting opiates, such as methadone or suboxone, to short acting opiates prior to Ibogaine treatment.
The floor will then be opened to the audience for their participation to propose challenges, health risks or ethical issues.
Christine Minanga Fitzsimmons is a Registered Nurse and humanitarian aid worker. She holds a Bachelors of Arts from Pace University & an Associates of Science in Nursing from State University of New York Adirondack. Christine has worked as a clinical nurse in Neuro Intensive Care Units, and ICU step down units since 2011. She has facilitated Ibogaine treatments for addiction and personal healing since 2008 in various settings, from underground, to medical model, as well as the jungle of Gabon. She served with Medecins Sans Frontieres in Ethiopia from 2015-2016, as well as other NGO’s in Togo and Senegal. Christine is credited as a co-author of the Global Ibogaine Therapy Alliance’s (GITA) Clinical Guidelines for Ibogaine-Assisted Detoxification. She is a co-founder of IbogaSafe, an organization dedicated to on-site training and education to reduce harm and increase safety in ibogaine treatment.
Jamie McAlpin holds a Bachelors of Science in Nursing from East Carolina University. Her specialties include Coronary Care Unit, Cardiovascular Intensive Care, Cardiothoracic/Open Heart Intensive Care, Code Blue Team, Cardiac Catheterization Lab (adult/pediatric), and Electrophysiology Lab (adult/pediatric). In 2014, she began working with Iboga and researching Ibogaine safety and best practices. She also began volunteering with the Global Ibogaine Therapy Alliance (GITA) to co-author the Clinical Guidelines for Ibogaine-Assisted Detoxification, which led her to deepen her research into the medical considerations and risks related to Iboga/Ibogaine. In 2015 she completed training to become an American Heart Association BLS and ACLS instructor and continued working with GITA to develop the first ACLS for Ibogaine, and Heartsaver CPR & AED pre-conference training courses offered at the 2016 Global Ibogaine Conference in Tepoztlan, Mexico. She also presented on the Ibogaine Therapy Ethics & Safety panel discussion at the conference. Jamie is co-founder of IbogaSafe, an organization dedicated to on-site training and education to reduce harm with Ibogaine treatment. She is currently developing a Basic Heart Anatomy & ECG Interpretation webinar course tailored to Ibogaine providers to be offered through IbogaSafe.
Clare S. Wilkins is a former intravenous drug user and methadone patient who shed her chemical dependencies with the aid of ibogaine in 2005. As founder of Pangea Biomedics, she has facilitated over 600 treatments and has collaborated with MAPS to study the long-term effects of patients undergoing detoxification therapy with ibogaine for opiates. Since 2010 she has been an active board member of The Global Ibogaine Therapy Alliance (GITA) and is a co-author of the Clinical Guidelines for Ibogaine-Assisted Detoxification, a comprehensive risk-management resource and minimum standard of care. Clare also serves on the board of advisors for Symbio Life Sciences. Mentored by Howard Lotsof, she is committed to advancing scientific research of iboga, including ibogaine, its alkaloids and analogs. She is currently collaborating with ICEERS to develop a clinical trial for methadone patients utilizing the cumulative administration method she developed over 10 years of clinical practice in Mexico. As a member of INPUD, an international drug user rights organization, she is devoted to reducing stigma and harm, promoting the health of people who use drugs and every human’s basic right to medicine.