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Please be aware when posting about alternative medications that some meds may still be illegal in the US or other countries. 

When looking at posts about alternative meds, staff will give priority to US rulings.  When possible, we will also mention rulings for Canada, UK, EU, Australia.  If you know about a ruling for a particular alternative med in your country, that is not mentioned, please feel free to PM staff and let us know. If you could provide info links when you do, that would help.  Thank you!  @20YearsandCounting


Drug Scheduling in the US - D. E. A.  (Drug Enforcement Agency)


Listing of controlled substances (alphabetical, PDF file link):  https://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/schedules/orangebook/c_cs_alpha.pdf

Drug Facts Page:  https://www.dea.gov/factsheets

Drug Scheduling

Drug Schedules

Drugs, substances, and certain chemicals used to make drugs are classified into five (5) distinct categories or schedules depending upon the drug’s acceptable medical use and the drug’s abuse or dependency potential. The abuse rate is a determinate factor in the scheduling of the drug; for example, Schedule I drugs have a high potential for abuse and the potential to create severe psychological and/or physical dependence. As the drug schedule changes-- Schedule II, Schedule III, etc., so does the abuse potential-- Schedule V drugs represents the least potential for abuse. A Listing of drugs and their schedule are located at Controlled Substance Act (CSA) Scheduling or CSA Scheduling by Alphabetical Order. These lists describes the basic or parent chemical and do not necessarily describe the salts, isomers and salts of isomers, esters, ethers and derivatives which may also be classified as controlled substances. These lists are intended as general references and are not comprehensive listings of all controlled substances.

Please note that a substance need not be listed as a controlled substance to be treated as a Schedule I substance for criminal prosecution. A controlled substance analogue is a substance which is intended for human consumption and is structurally or pharmacologically substantially similar to or is represented as being similar to a Schedule I or Schedule II substance and is not an approved medication in the United States. (See 21 U.S.C. §802(32)(A) for the definition of a controlled substance analogue and 21 U.S.C. §813 for the schedule.)

Schedule I

Schedule I drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Some examples of Schedule I drugs are:

heroin, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), marijuana (cannabis), 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (ecstasy), methaqualone, and peyote

Schedule II

Schedule II drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with a high potential for abuse, with use potentially leading to severe psychological or physical dependence. These drugs are also considered dangerous. Some examples of Schedule II drugs are:

Combination products with less than 15 milligrams of hydrocodone per dosage unit (Vicodin), cocaine, methamphetamine, methadone, hydromorphone (Dilaudid), meperidine (Demerol), oxycodone (OxyContin), fentanyl, Dexedrine, Adderall, and Ritalin

Schedule III

Schedule III drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with a moderate to low potential for physical and psychological dependence. Schedule III drugs abuse potential is less than Schedule I and Schedule II drugs but more than Schedule IV. Some examples of Schedule III drugs are:

Products containing less than 90 milligrams of codeine per dosage unit (Tylenol with codeine), ketamine, anabolic steroids, testosterone

Schedule IV

Schedule IV drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with a low potential for abuse and low risk of dependence. Some examples of Schedule IV drugs are:

Xanax, Soma, Darvon, Darvocet, Valium, Ativan, Talwin, Ambien, Tramadol

Schedule V

Schedule V drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with lower potential for abuse than Schedule IV and consist of preparations containing limited quantities of certain narcotics. Schedule V drugs are generally used for antidiarrheal, antitussive, and analgesic purposes. Some examples of Schedule V drugs are:

cough preparations with less than 200 milligrams of codeine or per 100 milliliters (Robitussin AC), Lomotil, Motofen, Lyrica, Parepectolin

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About Kratom: 

Kratom is now a Schedule I drug, pending investigation by the DEA. (Article is from March 2017)


What is Kratom - from WebMD:



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About CBD Oil:

Note: CBD Oil, and other marijuana derivatives, will be considered as 'illegal' substances because they are still illegal in many US states. It is still illegal in Canada, legal and/or highly restricted in UK and EU, potentially either illegal or highly restricted in Australia.


UK: https://www.bbc.com/news/health-44534861

EU: https://www.royalqueenseeds.com/blog-where-in-the-world-is-cbd-legal-n950

Australia:  https://eternalplants.com.au/is-cbd-oil-legal-australia/

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  • 2 weeks later...

About Ketamine:

Ketamine is a Schedule II non-narcotic hallucinogen. It has accepted medical uses, but has a high potential for abuse and dependence, and is sometimes used in sexual assault crimes due to the immobilizing and hallucinatory effects.

DEA:  https://www.dea.gov/factsheets/ketamine

PDF File, with more detail:  https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/sites/getsmartaboutdrugs.com/files/publications/DoA_2017Ed_Updated_6.16.17.pdf#page=68


Canada:  Schedule I narcotic 

Australia:  Schedule 8 controlled drug

UK: Class C, with recent moves to make it Class B


"Report on the Risk Assessment of Ketamine and GHB in the framework of the Joint Action on New Synthetic Drugs", from the EU Monitor:



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