Phencyclidine or phenylcyclohexyl piperidine, also known as angel dust among other names, is a drug used for its mind-altering effects. PCP may cause hallucinations, distorted perceptions of sounds, and violent behavior. As a recreational drug, it is typically smoked, but may be taken by mouth, snorted, or injected.


Cluster Number:
Wiki Number: PW165
Diagnosis: Phencyclidine-PCP Related Disorders
US Patients: 2017-3% used sometime in their lives; 36% moved on into schizophrenia.
World Patients:
Sex Ratio:
Age Onset:
Brain Area: Inhibits hyppocampus, cerebellum with prolonged use leading to memory loss; acts like dopamine in its receptors
Symptoms: Drug “angel-dust” for mind-altering, hallucinations, muted sounds, violent behavior; may have adverse effects or suicide.
Progression: Unpredictable brain-altering in the short term; long-term brain damage often occurred. Resembles a schizophrenic episode.
Causes: used recreationally
Medications: benzodiazopenes for agitation and seizures; antipsychotics
Therapies: None listed.


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  • Ketamine; history and role in anesthetic pharmacology
    by Kazuyoshi Hirota on June 28, 2022

    Ketamine (Ket) was developed in 1962 as a less hallucinogenic and shorter acting agent than phencyclidine. It was given to humans for the first time in 1964. However, Ket produces several adverse reactions such as raised intracranial and blood pressures along with seizures, and patients still show low acceptance due to hallucinations. As new volatile and intravenous anesthetic agents with good emergence and favorable side effect profiles were developed, Ket use markedly decreased. In the 1990s,...

  • Repeated administration of rapastinel produces exceptionally prolonged rescue of memory deficits in phencyclidine-treated mice
    by Lakshmi Rajagopal on June 19, 2022

    Rapastinel, a positive N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) modulator with rapid-acting antidepressant properties, rescues memory deficits in rodents. We have previously reported that a single intravenous dose of rapastinel, significantly, but only transiently, prevented and rescued deficits in the novel object recognition (NOR) test, a measure of episodic memory, produced by acute or subchronic administration of the NMDAR antagonists, phencyclidine (PCP) and ketamine. Here, we tested the...

  • Can Umbilical Cord and Meconium Results be Directly Compared? Analytical Approach Matters
    by Vrajesh Pandya on June 16, 2022

    Maternal drug use during pregnancy is a significant concern. Drug-exposed newborns are often born premature and may suffer from birth defects, neonatal abstinence syndrome, as well as cognitive and developmental delays. Because of this, testing of neonatal specimens is carried out to assess fetal drug exposure during pregnancy. Umbilical cord tissue (UC) and meconium are commonly used specimens for this purpose. However, comprehensive studies comparing drug positivity rates and concentration in...

  • Phencyclidine in Drivers and Decedents in Dallas County: A 5-Year Retrospective Review of Toxicological and Demographical Data
    by Lindsay Glicksberg on June 11, 2022

    Presented are phencyclidine (PCP)-positive cases received by the Toxicology Laboratory at the Southwestern Institute of Forensic Sciences (SWIFS) from local law enforcement agencies and the Office of the Medical Examiner (ME) between January 1, 2015, and December 31, 2020. Of the 43,940 requests for testing received during that time, 898 (2.04%) were positive for PCP. These cases were evaluated for PCP concentration, additional/concurrently reported drug concentrations, and demographics. For ME...