Oxiracetam is a cognitive boosting compound belonging to the racetam family of drugs. This is the same family for drugs such as Pramiracetam, Phenylpiracetam, and the popular Piracetam. These drugs were initially developed for treating memory loss and other cognitive decline issues arising from neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease. However, they’re not very well-studied, so they are not used in the medical field, and they are also not approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
Piracetam is the original racetam drug. Most of the other drugs in the family, including Oxiracetam, are derived from Piracetam. It was developed in the 1970s and is believed to be quite powerful. Some trials suggest it has a bigger impact on enhancing wakefulness and alertness than the drug Phenylpiracetam. Its effects on patients with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia have also been studied but on a limited scale. Preliminary results point out that this product may be effective for reversing memory loss, learning impairment, and overall cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients.
There have also been reports that it may boost cognitive functions in healthy individuals. This explains why it is also sold as a nootropic or “smart drug.”
Unfortunately, Oxiracetam, just like other nootropics, is seriously understudied. Most of the trials investigating its effects are done on animals and not human subjects.
In the US and Canada, Oxiracetam is available as a dietary supplement. You can easily buy the drug from online stores without the need for a doctor’s prescription. It is also unregulated in Australia, UK, and other European countries.
Mechanism of Action
According to the available data, it affects the brain in several ways. First, it’s believed that Oxiracetam modulates Acetylcholine and glutamate levels. This compound interacts with the cholinergic and glutamatergic systems to increase the release of these neurotransmitters. Both Acetylcholine and glutamate are involved in various cognitive functions like learning, memory, attention, etc. Therefore, by boosting the levels of these key neurotransmitters, it reverses cognitive decline, and that’s why it is said to be effective for neurodegenerative disorders.
Oxiracetam also works by increasing cellular energy. It also boosts neuronal communication by triggering the release of D-Aspartic Acid (DAA) and modulating lipid metabolism.
Some trials also report that Oxiracetam stimulates the central nervous system. It delivers a mild stimulant effect to boost alertness and wakefulness without inducing adverse reactions like jitters, irritability, and nervousness. Of course, this is subject to the dosages used.
Uses and Benefits
According to the limited data available, it may be used for:
- Improving Memory
Numerous studies have reported Oxiracetam’s ability to boost memory formation, retention, and retrieval. This effect hasn’t just been observed in animal studies but also in human trials involving patients with dementia. In this trial, the effects of Oxiracetam were investigated in 60 elderly patients with organic brain syndrome in a double blind study. The study also had a placebo where Piracetam was used. The patients were started with a dosage of 400mg, which was increased every week by 400mg up to 2400mg. After 6 weeks, the researchers looked at the impact of the nootropic and compared it to Piracetam. In both groups, there were significant improvements in the different tests administered, i.e., objective psychological tests and subjective tests like rating scales. It was observed that the results in the group of patients receiving Oxiracetam were significantly higher than the placebo.
This clearly shows that it can be very beneficial not just in patients with organic brain syndrome but also in patients with dementia and other similar conditions. They were also well-tolerated, so the risk of side effects is very minimal when the drug is used appropriately.
Additional research is necessary. Trials involving healthy individuals are also warranted to understand the impact of Oxiracetam on students and professionals using it as a nootropic.
- Increasing Concentration and Focus
Oxiracetam also acts as a mild stimulant to boost focus, concentration, and attention. In one human trial of 96 elderly dementia patients, not only did Oxiracetam boost attention, but it also increased reaction times.
This suggests that Oxiracetam may be useful for enhancing one’s ability to study and complete certain tasks. The problem is that Oxiracetam has not been tested in healthy individuals. However, anecdotal evidence shows that some people are already enjoying increased mental energy, focus, and alertness from Oxiracetam.
- Boosting Neuroprotection
It produced some neuroprotectant properties in animal studies. In one trial, Oxiracetam was administered in rats before they were injected with neurotoxins. The rats that were treated with the product showed better resistance to neurotoxicity.
The neuroprotectant effects of Oxiracetam were also put to the test in healthy volunteers who were receiving the drug scopolamine, which is known for causing memory loss. The subjects were given between 1600 and 2400mg. it reduced memory loss issues.
Based on these trials, it’s believed it could be used to prevent Alzheimer’s diseases, Parkinson’s, and other forms of dementia. It may also be effective in preventing age-related cognitive issues.
- Promote Wakefulness
As a mild psychostimulant, it may be used for inhibiting sleep and promoting wakefulness. It works almost like a stimulant, but the risk of side effects is significantly lower when taking Oxiracetam as compared to stimulants like caffeine.
Trials show Oxiracetam achieves this by acting as a cholinergic compound. It also improves energy, metabolism, and cerebral blood flow, i.e., blood flow in the brain.
It is usually safe when used at the right dosages. When abused, it may produce side effects such as:
- Sleep disturbance
- High blood pressure
By no means is this list exhaustive. Since it is not extensively studied, its full safety profile remains unknown. Therefore, it’s crucial that you use it carefully to avoid potential long-term complications.
Do not take it without a doctor’s approval if you are already taking medications for a different condition.
Oxiracetam is usually used in dosages between 1200 and 2400mg per day, split into two or three servings. Some trials used dosages as low as 400mg, and they still produced decent results.
New users should start with lower dosages to reduce the risk of side effects.
It is available in both capsule and powder form. It can be used with or without food.
The nootropic usually crosses the blood-brain barrier within an hour and reaches peak levels in 1-3 hours.
Some reports suggest using Oxiracetam about 1 hour before studying or working to maximize its effects.
To intensify the results. it is sometimes stacked or combined with other nootropics. Some people use it with other racetam drugs like Aniracetam, while others combine it with choline drugs like Alpha GPC.
Do not stack these drugs if you have never used them before. The effects can be very overwhelming. Also, do not stack nootropics if you are treating a medical condition like Alzheimer’s. In fact, we encourage you to use these drugs under a licensed physician’s guidance if you are dealing with a medical condition.