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PCP/Phencyclidine

Brief Description

PCP is a synthetic drug sold as tablets, capsules, or white or colored powder. It can be snorted, smoked, or eaten. Developed in the 1950s as an IV anesthetic, PCP was never approved for human use because of problems during clinical studies, including intensely negative psychological effects.

Statistics and Trends

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Monitoring the Future Study: Trends in Prevalence of PCP for 12th-Graders; 2013 (in percent)*
Drug Time Period 12th-Graders
PCP Lifetime 1.30
Past Year 0.70
Past Month 0.40

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National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Trends in Prevalence of PCP for Ages 12 or Older, Ages 12 to 17, Ages 18 to 25, and Ages 26 or Older; 2012 (in percent)*
Drug Time Period Ages 12 or Older Ages 12 to 17 Ages 18 to 25 Ages 26 or Older
PCP Lifetime 2.50 0.40 1.00 3.00
Past Year 0.10 0.20 0.20 0.00
Past Month 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00

Featured Publications

Publication Cover

Hallucinogens and Dissociative Drugs (Research Reports)

Published March 2001. Revised January 2014.
Offers the latest research findings on hallucinogens and dissociative drugs, describing what they are, how they are abused, and basic facts about different drugs within this classification of drugs. En Español

Hallucinogens - LSD, Peyote, Psilocybin, and PCP (DrugFacts)

Revised June 2009.
Provides basic facts about hallucinogens (LSD, peyote, psilocybin, and PCP) including how they are abused, how they affect the brain, other health effects, and treatment options. En Español

Publication Cover

Hallucinogens (Mind Over Matter)

Published January 1997. Revised January 2009.
Explains how hallucinogens affect the brain’s communication centers as well as its ability to control sleep and emotions. En Español

Other Resources

Past information on many drugs of abuse is available on our Archives site.

This page was last updated December 2012

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    Drugs, Brains, and Behavior - The Science of Addiction

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    Easy-to-read Drug Facts