Ketamine infusion to treat mental illnesses
Why is ketamine used for Augmented Psychotherapy?
Ketamine was developed as an anesthetic and pain reliever and has been used worldwise for over 50 years. It is a particularly safe medication with few side effects. In low doses, it can evoke a rapid antidepressant effect.
KETAMINE IN PSYCHIATRY
Ketamine infusions to treat depression, anxiety disorder and OCD
After the first studies on the treatment of depression in 2000, the (at least scientific) interest in ketamine for the treatment of severe depression was moderate. This has changed over the last decade. There has been a surge of interest in ketamine for the treatment of psychiatric disorders. Can ketamine be described as a “new therapy” for depression and other disorders? There is good evidence for the fast antidepressive effects of ketamine. We have compiled a short overview of studies for you.
SOLIFY THE EFFECT OF KETAMINE
Our treatment with ketamine
A relevant effect of ketamine infusions is a significant change in one’s state of consciousness, which lasts for about an hour. We use this change therapeutically with you in our clinic as part of ketamine-augmented psychotherapy. By using a perfusor (a syringe pump) and specialist administration by an anesthesiologist, an optimal dose range for inducing therapeutically valuable altered states of consciousness can be found. The next day, a psychotherapy session is held to integrate the experience from the ketamine session. In this way, we aim to solidify the short-term positive effects of ketamine so that they last long-term.
Ketamine has side effects
Ketamine has a mind-altering effect. During a ketamine infusion, patients experience a change in their perceptions, feelings and thoughts. The intensity of this change and experience can vary. We integrate the ketamine infusion into a specifically designed therapeutic concept.
Other physical side effects include a moderate increase in blood pressure and heart rate. Nausea, vomiting and blurred vision may also occur. Allergic reactions are very rare. In our practice, we explain the side effects of ketamine and any risks to patients in detail during medical education sessions.
DEVELOPMENT AS A DRUG
From lab to psychiatry
Research on ketamine began in 1926 with the development of phencyclidine (PCP). This substance was not marketed until 30 years later, in 1956, by the company Parke-Davis (today Pfizer) as the drug “Sernyl”. Two years later, the first animal trials with the substance as an anesthetic began.
ABOUT SPRAVATO ®
Esketamine nose spray SPRAVATO ®
Ketamine is a so-called racemate, a mixture of two forms. One of the forms, esketamine, was developed by the U.S. company Johnson & Johnson into a medicine administered as a nasal spray. It was approved by both the U.S. FDA and the European EMA in 2019. The approval (as Spravato®) is for treatment-resistant depression, meaning depression which has not responded to at least two different therapies with antidepressants. For this purpose, esketamine is supposed to be given in addition to an SSRI or an SNRI. Spravato® has not yet been launched in Germany, but the market launch is imminent.