What is ketamine?
Ketamine is a transformational medicine of the mind. It can rapidly —often within an hour or two— lift the symptoms of anxiety, depression, and other conditions.
A Trusted and Widely-Used Medicine
Ketamine was approved by the FDA in 1970 as an anesthetic and analgesic, and has been listed on the World Health Organization's List of Essential Medicines since 1985.
Ketamine is also prescribed off-label to treat a wide range of mental health issues.
Ketamine is not FDA-approved for the treatment of depression or anxiety. Learn more about off-label uses here.
Side effects of ketamine treatment may include: altered sense of time, anxiety, blurred vision, diminished ability to see/hear/feel, dry mouth, elevated blood pressure or heart rate, elevated intraocular or intracranial pressure, excitability, loss of appetite, mental confusion, nausea/vomiting, nystagmus (rapid eye movements), restlessness, slurred speech, synesthesia (a mingling of the senses).
Do not proceed with ketamine treatment if any of the following apply to you:
- Allergic to ketamine
- Symptoms of psychosis or mania
- Uncontrolled high blood pressure
- CHF or other serious heart problem
- Severe breathing problem
- History of elevated intraocular or intracranial pressure
- History of hyperthyroidism
- Other serious medical illness
- Pregnant, nursing, or trying to become pregnant
Ketamine has been reported to produce issues including, but not limited to, those listed below. However, lasting adverse side-effects are rare when medical protocols are carefully followed.
While ketamine has not been shown to be physically addictive, it has been shown to cause moderate psychological dependency in some recreational users.
- In rare cases, frequent, heavy users have reported increased frequency of urination, urinary incontinence, pain urinating, passing blood in the urine, or reduced bladder size
- Ketamine may worsen problems in people with schizophrenia, severe personality disorders, or other serious mental disorders.
- Users with a personal or family history of psychosis should be cautious using any psychoactive substance, including ketamine, and discuss potential risks with your MindBloom® clinician before proceeding with treatment.
- The dissociative effects of ketamine may increase patient vulnerability and the risk of accidents.
To promote positive outcomes and ensure safety, follow these ketamine treatment guidelines:
- Do not operate a vehicle (e.g., car, motorcycle, bicycle) or heavy machinery following treatment until you’ve had a full night of sleep
- Refrain from taking benzodiazepines or stimulants for 24 hours prior to treatment
- Continue to take antihypertensive medication as prescribed
- Avoid hangovers or alcohol intake
- Refrain from consuming solid foods within 3 hours prior to treatment and liquids within 1 hour prior to treatment
- Ketamine treatment should never be conducted without a monitor present to ensure your safety
A Promising Treatment for Mental Health
Known for its anesthetic effects and therapeutic potential, ketamine is increasingly being used as a treatment for anxiety and depression.
At lower doses, ketamine can disrupt negative feelings and preoccupations and help the brain create new, healthier patterns.
How does it work?
Ketamine acts on the brain to provide relief from anxiety and depression.
Fuel Neural Growth
When people suffer from chronic anxiety and depression, their neurons become stunted with fewer connections.
Ketamine helps repair this damage by stimulating the production of chemicals that act like fertilizer for the brain, restoring and strengthening connections between neurons.
Reduce Negative Thoughts
Ketamine can also offer relief from negative thoughts by normalizing activity in a part of the brain known as the default mode network.
By altering connectivity in this part of the brain, ketamine can help people to break out of old thought patterns that cause anxiety and depression.
A Powerful Medicine
With its ability to promote the creation of new, healthy neural connections, ketamine can be a powerful tool for managing mental health.
For many people, the effects of ketamine therapy can last for months, with intermittent "boosters" extending the effects even further.
Gentle Onset Tablets
While intravenous and intramuscular administration methods can be abrupt, Mindbloom provides tablets that are dissolved under the tongue and gently take effect over 10-15 minutes.
Feelings of Relief
By temporarily silencing negative thoughts, ketamine therapy can offer much needed relief and healing.
Ketamine silenced the constant thoughts that have been torturing me for most of my life.”
Since using Mindbloom, I’ve experienced relief from my depression and anxiety.”
My experience culminated in the notion that everything is going to be okay.”
While everyone’s experience is different, many clients describe their Mindbloom sessions as gentle.
The most surprising part of my Mindbloom experience was how gentle and safe it felt.”
I expected a punch in the face, but it felt more like a tickle on the arm.”
I appreciate the comfort and safety of my own living room.”
Ketamine therapy facilitates new perspectives that can help us better process and move on from pain.
Mindbloom gave me a better perspective on anxiety, depression, and life itself.”
I’ve reframed my negative thoughts into positive ones.”
Mindbloom helped build a foundation that I needed to keep me from spiraling and feeling lost.”
Clinical research continues to demonstrate that ketamine can be used to treat mental health conditions and their symptoms successfully.
The Impact of Ketamine on Postoperative Cognitive Dysfunction, Delirium, and Renal Dysfunction
Ketamine is a commonly used anesthetic medication which is used for induction of anesthesia as well as as an analgesic. It has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties which may decrease post-operative complications following cardiac surgery with cardiopulmonary bypass that are thought to associated with inflammation. Some studies have shown that ketamine does decrease these complications when compared with anesthetics that are not commonly used in our cardiac anesthesiology practice. Propofol is another commonly used anesthetic medication which is used for induction of anesthesia. Ketamine has not been compared with propofol for potential to reduce post-operative complications associated with the inflammatory process. This study aims to see if ketamine will reduce the incidence of cognitive dysfunction, delirium, and renal dysfunction in comparison with propofol. In addition, the hemodynamic impact of ketamine compared propofol will be investigated.
The Effects of Sedatives on Tobacco Use Disorder
This proposal will obtain preliminary data on the effect of a single sub-anesthetic dose of a sedative on cigarette craving and smoking behavior as well as measuring tolerability and acceptability.
The Effect of a Single Dose of Intravenous Ketamine on Suicidal Ideation: A Systematic Review and Individual Participant Data Meta-Analysis
Suicide is a public health crisis with limited treatment options. The authors conducted a systematic review and individual participant data meta-analysis examining the effects of a single dose of ketamine on suicidal ideation and concluded that ketamine rapidly reduced suicidal thoughts, within 1 day and for up to 1 week in depressed patients with suicidal ideation.