ketamine for non-anesthetic indications

What I Learned at the ASKP 2019 Conference in Denver, CO

What I Learned at the ASKP 2019 Conference in Denver, CO

The American Society of Ketamine Physicians (ASKP) formed in 2017 and had its second annual conference near Denver, Colorado in September 2019.  The gathering included over 200 people including: anesthesiologists, emergency physicians, family physicians, internists, nurse anesthetists, patients, pharmacists, psychiatrists, psychotherapists, registered nurses, and support staff.  

It was astounding to connect with others and learn a myriad of ways ketamine is being used therapeutically in outpatient clinics, homes, and hospitals. The learning not only came from the speakers’ presentations, who were experts in their fields, but also other ASKP members who are out in the trenches applying their unique perspective on ketamine. 

The Effect of Hippocampal Neurogenesis In Depression

The Effect of Hippocampal Neurogenesis In Depression

Neurogenesis

When you break the word itself down, it comes in two parts: “neuro” as in neuron, and “genesis” as in creation. Neurogenesis broadly speaking is the process by which new neurons are created in the brain, thus allowing for increased plasticity of the brain and stronger synaptic connections. Adult neurogenesis is the process by which new neurons are created and integrated into existing brain circuitry when you are an adult. Adult neurogenesis can be seen in the olfactory bulb and the hippocampus.

Going Beyond Serotonin in Depression

Going Beyond Serotonin in Depression

Depression is among the most disabling conditions in our society. According to the World Health Organization, depression is the leading cause of ill health and disability worldwide. In America, 12.5% of individuals over the age of 12 have filled an antidepressant prescription.  Yet, the effectiveness of these medications are still lacking. Many patients don’t respond to antidepressant medications, and it can take months for the medicine to kick in. Unfortunately, many patients will regain their depression after being on medications long term.

How to Find the Right Ketamine Clinic For You

How to Find the Right Ketamine Clinic For You

Ketamine clinics are popping up left and right in your town, or maybe you are ready to take a flight to find one. How do you know if the clinic is for you? How do you know if you should go there? We’d love to have everybody come to our clinic, but our clinic isn’t for everyone!

 While there is no perfect way to do this (nor is there a perfect clinic!), here are a few questions to get answered to help find the right clinic for you.

Should I Get One or Multiple Ketamine Infusions?

Should I Get One or Multiple Ketamine Infusions?

Research supports multiple ketamine infusions are needed to minimize depression symptoms and maintain antidepressant effects. We recommend pursuing the 6 series infusion to start, followed by boosters as needed.

A single ketamine infusion can be effective within hours of the infusion to reduce depression symptoms for up to 80% of patients. However, these effects can last only up to a few days to a week. Multiple infusions in the form of a series of six infusions can prolong the antidepressant effects for up to several weeks (and for some people months).

In the setting of chronic, high-dose ketamine use in abusers, studies demonstrate unfavorable changes in the brain, and neurotoxicity in the rodent model.  Fortunately, one study of clinical ketamine use at Yale Psychiatric Hospital looking at patients who received ketamine infusions on a long-term basis showed no evidence of cognitive decline, delusions, or cystitis in their sample of patients.  

To understand what could be best for you, you’ll need to explore where the recommended protocol comes from and what can happen with too much for too long, and more. It’s a lot but no worries we’re here to walk you through it!

What Does A Ketamine Infusion Feel Like?

What Does A Ketamine Infusion Feel Like?

Ketamine infusions are becoming increasingly popular due to the fact they are can potentially rapidly treat anxiety, pain disorders, and treatment-resistant depression. You may be curious about what the experience of ketamine infusion will be like, especially since there is a lot of confusing and misleading information out on the internet. Well, we got you covered!!

What does a ketamine infusion feel like? Depending on how much ketamine and for how long you receive the infusion, you can experience anything from being more aware of how your body feels, quieting of the mind, and filled with feelings of love and gratitude all the way to feeling connecting to the Universe/God, death of your ego, and reliving past experiences.

Are Ketamine Clinics Legal?

Are Ketamine Clinics Legal?

Ketamine was first synthesized in the 1960’s for use as a general anesthetic.  It’s been traditionally used in the operating room and emergency departments for sedation and pain control.   Ketamine has a colorful history and is known to be used in veterinary medicine as a “horse tranquilizer” and even a recreational club drug of abuse.  However, ketamine is the most common medicine used worldwide for sedation and the World Health Organization (WHO) places ketamine in it’s List of Essential Medicines.

Recently, there has been an upward trend of more ketamine clinics opening up in the United States. Ketamine clinics are on the cutting edge of medicine and represent a paradigm shift in the treatment of depression depression, anxiety, OCD, PTSD, as well as various forms of chronic pain.  Because of ketamine’s history, there may be some confusion about it’s legal status when used “off-label.” To answer it simply, yes, ketamine clinics are legal.