Adult psychiatric patients (N = 40) were given drug interviews in which they received in random order one of: saline solution, methamphetamine hydrochloride, hydroxydione sodium succinate (Viadril). amobarbital sodium, and a mixture of methamphetamine hydrochloride and amobarbital sodium. The interviewer administered the drug to the patient, but observers were blind to the drug given. Observers and interviewers rated the patient's behavior at 15-minute intervals and the patient filled out questionnaires 24 and 48 hours later about his memories, feelings, and other reactions to the interview.
Observers could detect the drug given with statistical significance. The conduct of the interviewers sometimes outweighed the drug's effect on patients' behavior. Expression of negative emotion, such as anxiety and anger, did not correlate with reports of improvement afterward. The freer conditions of this series did not result in greater emotional expression than occurred in an earlier series conducted under more controlled conditions.