This information is provided by DAN 24/7 the All Wales Drug And Alcohol Helpline. Freephone 0808 808 2234      Click to Print This Page

PMA information from DAN 24/7

Common Names

Death, Dr. Death, Pink Ecstasy, Red Mitsubishi, Killer, Chicken Powder, Chicken Yellow and many other terms.

Scientific Names

PMA: para-methoxy-amphetamine
PMMA: para-methoxy-N-methylamphetamine

Generic Name

PMA: 4-methoxyamphetamine, 4-MA
PMMA: 4-MMA; Methyl-MA

Effects Of PMA

Desired Effects:

PMA / PMMA effects are similar to MDMA and can be sold as ecstasy. Feelings of being alert and full of energy; also has some anti-depressant qualities due to it's interaction with serotonin.


PMA is a stronger chemical than ecstasy and takes longer to take effect, some people have overdosed due to taking more tablets believing they have taken a weak ecstasy tablet. Anyone with a heart condition, blood pressure problems, epilepsy or asthma can have serious reactions to the drug as even in small doses it can significantly increases blood pressure, body temperature and pulse rates. Can cause paranoia and depression, muscle spasms, labored breathing, nausea & vomiting.



PMA is a strong psychedelic which may cause dangerous overheating of the body & high levels of toxicity. PMA has been sold as ecstasy tablets, and has lead to life-threatening or fatal hyperthermia in some users. Overdose is a real risk especially if mixed with other stimulant drugs such as cocaine or MDMA or if mixed with alcohol, leading to convulsions, coma & death. PMMA is reportedly weaker than PMA, more "ecstasy-like", but can still produce nausea and hyperthermia.


Long term risks are not yet fully known.

What it looks like

Pure PMA is a white powder, but can appear beige, pink, or yellowish on the street. PMA can be a white pressed tablet which is swallowed. However, PMA / PMMA pills could be a variety of colours or imprints and can be sold as ecstasy - there is no way of knowing just from the appearance what drug(s) it might contain.

How does it work?

PMA - Psychedelic Stimulant; similar to ecstasy only stronger; hallucinogenic effects; serious overdose potential due to delayed onset.
PMMA - Empathogenic Stimulant; more "ecstasy-like" with euphoric effects.

Legal status

Class A under the Misuse of Drugs Act. Possession can mean up to seven years in prison and/or an unlimited fine; supplying can mean a life sentence and / or an unlimited fine.

How Is It Taken?

Tablets are swallowed.



Medical uses


Where does it come from?

PMA first came into circulation in the early 1970s, where it was used as a substitute for the hallucinogenic properties of LSD. Recent research suggests PMA occurs as a trace chemical in some plant species.

Helping services

Most areas of the UK have 'street agencies' or projects (sometimes called community drug services or community drug teams) which offer a range of services including information and advice, counselling, needle exchanges and sometimes support groups and complementary therapies such as acupuncture. The increase in stimulant use has led to some agencies offering specialist services that offer counselling, cognitive behaviour therapy, acupuncture and other alternative therapies and prescribing of anti-depressants, and also possible referral to residential rehabilitation. Some services have extended working hours and may offer weekend support. GPs and possibly the local hospital A&E department can make referrals to specialist drug services as well as general medical services, information and advice often in partnership with a drug agency or Drug Dependency Unit.

Parents & other relatives

Drug agencies also provide lots of advice and support to parents of people using these drugs. Many street agencies can provide relative support groups or counselling for family members, partners etc.

If you would like to talk about PMA problems then please call the DAN 24/7 Helpline on:

0808 808 2234

This information is provided by DAN 24/7 the All Wales Drug And Alcohol Helpline. Freephone 0808 808 2234      Click to Print This Page