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Ketamine Treatment by Long Island Ketamine Infusions
July 21, 2021 at 4:00 AM
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You may have heard about the medication ketamine recently because it shows promise as a treatment for people experiencing depression who haven't responded to prescription medications. Though it has been in use as an anesthetic for both humans and animals for decades, only recently is it being explored as a treatment for depression. But what is Ketamine and how exactly can it benefit those experiencing depression?

What is Ketamine?

Ketamine is an anesthetic that first began to be used on animals in the 1960s. This medication was then approved for use as an anesthetic in people by the FDA in the 1970s. When used as an anesthetic, it provides pain relief, sedation, and amnesia. One of the benefits of ketamine is that, unlike many other anesthetics, it preserves breathing and airway reflexes, thus removing the need for ventilation.

Ketamine Treatment for Depression

Sometimes first responders gave ketamine as a sedative to agitated patients who, for example, may have attempted suicide. Those patients would then report decreased symptoms of depression. Health professionals, including doctors, began to discover that ketamine had powerful effects against depression and suicidal thoughts.

What Happens During a Ketamine Infusion?

While sitting in a comfortable chair, ketamine is administered through an IV over a period of 40 minutes and patients remain awake during the treatment. The side effects during treatment may include an “out of body experience”, seeing bright colors, and mild euphoria. Many patients report these effects as pleasant and non-intrusive.

After the infusion, these effects rapidly disappear and patients leave the office within half an hour, feeling quite normal. A much lower dose of ketamine is given for depression than for anesthesia.

How Do Ketamine Treatments Work?

While research is still being done in this field, scientific studies, including those conducted at Yale University and the National Institute of Mental Health, have shown that low dose intravenously administered ketamine can dramatically improve symptoms associated with depression and many anxiety disorders.

While it’s not exactly clear how ketamine helps combat depression, what we do know is that it exerts an antidepressant effect and may be able to help people successfully treat depression when other treatments have not been successful.

Types of Ketamine Treatment

There are 2 main types of ketamine treatment.

Racemic ketamine: Most often given as an infusion into the bloodstream. Sometimes called intravenous, or IV, ketamine, it’s a mix of two mirror-image molecules: "R" and "S" ketamine.

It is used off-label to treat depression.

Esketamine: Given as a nasal spray. It uses only the "S" molecule.

Why Long Island Ketamine Infusions?

Your mental health is our main priority and our commitment to our patients is to make them comfortable, safe, and help on their mental health journey. After an initial consultation, our staff will determine the best course of treatment for you and answer any questions you may have. Treatments are administered by experienced psychiatric professionals who offer state-of-the-art ketamine infusions. Long Island Ketamine Infusions is proud to serve Long Island and the nearby area, offering ketamine treatment for those suffering from depression. Get in touch with us to learn more and to better understand if ketamine treatment is right for you.