Ketamine therapy has become a popular treatment method in psychiatry in recent years. Psychiatrists can use ketamine therapy as part of a patient's treatment plan if they struggle with symptoms of depression, anxiety, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). However, not everyone is an ideal candidate for this type of therapy. This blog will review the…
Are There Any Risks Associated With Ketamine Infusion?
In recent years, you may have heard about ketamine infusion therapy. Though people have taken ketamine as a pain reliever for decades, it may be an option to treat depression. If you are suffering from this mental health condition, consider ketamine to combat your symptoms. There are also some words of caution you should understand.
How ketamine infusion works
Ketamine was originally common as an anesthetic for battlefield soldiers. Doctors now use the therapy to treat major depression and patients who have suicidal thoughts. Ketamine attacks transmitters in the brain. It helps regulate communication between receptors and neurons. Scientists are currently studying how it may be linked to mood disorders or a person’s thought process. Studies and use have shown that the drug can have a faster effect on a person’s mood than other antidepressants.
Be aware that the Food and Drug Administration has not approved the drug. Though there may be a link between this treatment and improvements in a person’s bout with depression, there is no definitive evidence yet. Patients should speak to a reputable health care provider about whether this therapy makes sense for them.
Any drug will have some side effects. Patients should understand what these are and balance them with the current severity of their depression. One of the most common risks of getting a ketamine infusion is that it may cause high blood pressure. Patients with this condition could develop heart disease, which may lead to stroke, heart attack or death. People who already have blood pressure issues should inform the doctor before taking ketamine.
After doing ketamine infusion therapy, some patients begin to feel nauseated. Other people even begin to vomit. Patients who experience this should share these effects with the doctor. A lower dosage may help reduce these sensations.
Some patients have disturbances in the way they perceive surroundings. For example, users may start to have blurry vision. Other people may have unusual stimulation from certain noises, textures or colors. Some patients have reported feeling as though time is going faster after doing a ketamine infusion therapy.
This is not a common side effect, though some patients have reported such experiences. After ketamine infusion therapy, people can feel as though they are standing outside of their own body, looking down on it. When this does occur, it usually only happens after the first treatment but not afterward. As more research continues about this drug, doctors and scientists are learning more about the benefits and risks of using it.
Do what is right for you
You will never find a drug that does not have some side effects or risks. Though some of the possible cautions can be serious, you should weigh these against how severe your depression symptoms are. A mental health doctor near you can help you decide whether it makes sense to do ketamine infusion therapy. Think about your needs and comfort level. Then, make an appointment with your doctor to discuss this treatment.
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