The role of psychopharmacology in the medical abuses of the Third Reich: from euthanasia programmes to human experimentation

Brain Research Bulletin
Francisco López-MuñozGabriel Rubio

Abstract

German psychiatry and pharmacology both enjoyed an extraordinary international reputation prior to the promulgation of the Third Reich. However, with the triumph of eugenic ideas and the imposition of a "racial hygiene" policy by the Nazi regime, various organs of the German health system saw themselves involved in a perverse system of social control, in which the illicit use of psychopharmacological tools became customary. In the present work, we review, from the historical perspective, the factors that helped to bring about this situation and we analyze the abuses (known and documented) committed through the specific use of psychotropic drugs during the Nazi period. Among such abuses we can identify the following illegitimate activities: the use of psychoactive drugs, mainly sedatives from the barbiturates family, in the different euthanasia programmes implemented by the Nazi authorities, in police activity and various types of repression, and for purely criminal and extermination purposes within the so-called "Final Solution"; psychopharmacological research on the mentally ill, without the slightest ethical requirements or legal justification; and the use of psychotropic agents in research on healthy subjects, recruited from...Continue Reading

References

Mar 1, 1993·The Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry·E Hunter
Jun 1, 1993·Neuropsychopharmacology : Official Publication of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology·H E Lehmann
Jul 26, 1996·American Journal of Medical Genetics·I I Gottesman, A Bertelsen
Dec 7, 1996·BMJ : British Medical Journal·J Vollmann, R Winau
Dec 7, 1996·BMJ : British Medical Journal·H M Hanauske-Abel
Dec 7, 1996·BMJ : British Medical Journal·W E Seidelman
May 4, 2000·Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica. Supplementum·J L Birley
Feb 13, 2001·Biomolecular Engineering·M Meusch
Jun 1, 2001·Progress in Neuro-psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry·T A Ban
Sep 12, 2001·Pediatric Neurology·M I Shevell, J Peiffer
Sep 14, 2001·Psychoanalytic Review·U H Peters
Jan 1, 1995·Osiris·D J Kevles, G L Geison
Sep 13, 2002·The Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry·Michael Dudley, Fran Gale
Jul 30, 2004·The New England Journal of Medicine·Susan Bachrach
Aug 23, 2005·Toxicology·L Szinicz
Jan 5, 2006·The American Journal of Psychiatry·Rael D Strous
Aug 5, 2006·Journal of the History of the Neurosciences·Florian Schmaltz
Jan 16, 2007·Progress in Neuro-psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry·Francisco López-MuñozAhmed Okasha
Jul 14, 1949·The New England Journal of Medicine·L ALEXANDER
Jan 9, 2009·History of Psychiatry·Susan Benedict, Tessa Chelouche

❮ Previous
Next ❯

Citations

Apr 15, 2010·Journal of the History of the Neurosciences·Hiten Patel
Jun 16, 2016·Frontiers in Psychiatry·Francisco López-Muñoz, Esther Cuerda-Galindo

❮ Previous
Next ❯

Related Concepts

Related Feeds

Allergy & Infectious Diseases

Allergies result from the hyperreactivity of the immune system to some environmental substance and can be life-threatening. Infectious diseases are caused by organisms including bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. They can be transmitted different ways, such as person-to-person. Here is the latest research on allergy and infectious diseases.

Allergy & Infectious Diseases (ASM)

Allergies result from the hyperreactivity of the immune system to some environmental substance and can be life-threatening. Infectious diseases are caused by organisms including bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. They can be transmitted different ways, such as person-to-person. Here is the latest research on allergy and infectious diseases.

© 2021 Meta ULC. All rights reserved