Methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) is a psychoactive drug with stimulant properties which acts as a norepinephrine-dopamine reuptake inhibitor (NDRI). Reportedly, it has four times the potency of methylphenidate (Ritalin, Concerta). MDPV has no history of FDA approved medical use but has been sold since around 2007 as a research chemical.
The MDPV appears as a pure white to light-brown, significantly hydrophilic crumbly powder with a slight odour. It appears to darken slightly in colour and take on a potato-tuber-like odor if exposed to air for any significant length of time. In some of the first batches that appeared on the research chemical market, an impurity was identified and said to consist of pyrrolidine, which could account for its earthy odour when left uncapped. It has also been observed to rapidly degrade and lose potency when in solution.
MDPV acts as a stimulant. The acute effects may include:
- physical: rapid heartbeat, increase in blood pressure, vasoconstriction, sweating
- mental: increases in alertness & awareness, increased wakefulness and arousal, anxiety, agitation, perception of a diminished requirement for food and sleep.
The effects have a duration of roughly 3 to 4 hours, with after effects such as tachycardia, hypertension, and mild stimulation lasting from 6 to 8 hours. High doses have been observed to cause intense, prolonged panic attacks in stimulant-intolerant users, and there are anecdotal reports of psychosis from sleep withdrawal and addiction at higher doses or more frequent dosing intervals. MDPV has been remarked about more than once for its powers as an aphrodisiac, which have been said to rival those of methamphetamine when dosed correctly. Users often report to feel compelled to continue redosing but then lose interest in taking it quickly because of the unpleasant side effects caused by higher doses.
MDPV is the 3,4-methylenedioxy ring-substituted analogue of the anorectic or appetite suppressant pyrovalerone. However, despite its structural similarity, the effects of MDPV bear little resemblance to other methylenedioxyphenylalkylamine derivatives such as 3,4-methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine (MDMA), instead producing purely stimulant effects with no entactogenic qualities. Extended binges on MDPV have also been reported to produce severe comedown syndrome similar to that of methamphetamine, characterized by depression, lethargy, headache, anxiety, postural hypotension (lightheadedness and weakness of the muscles), and in some cases severely bloodshot eyes. Time is the solution for these symptoms, which usually subside within 4 to 8 hours. Abdominal pain consistent with kidney pain has also been reported when MDPV is used for extended periods of time. MDPV may also cause temporary trismus and/or bruxism. Side effects are highly dose-dependant.