Ketamine-How it can help mood disorders and maybe more.

We are now offering Ketamine infusions for patients with depression, treatment resistant depression, suicidal ideation, PTSD, pain management, obsessive compulsive disorder, and maybe more. The beauty of Ketamine is its onset of action is almost immediate. Where historically relief from antidepressant medications takes weeks, if effective at all. The effects of ketamine when given via IV infusion can last a week or more and subsequent dosing has shown remission in some patients. Ketamine has been around for decades and is a very safe medication with even extensive research in children. Ketamine is on the WHO model list of essential medications.

What is Ketamine

Ketamine is a potent antagonist of the N-methyl-D- aspartate receptor, a major type of glutamate receptor in the brain.

By binding the NMDA receptors, ketamine appears to increase the amount of a neurotransmitter called glutamate. Glutamate then activates the connections in another receptor, called the AMPA receptor. Together, the initial blockade of NMDA and AMPA activation lead to the release of molecules that help neurons communicate with each other along new pathways. This process called synaptogenesis likely affects mood, thought patterns and even cognition. Ketamine may improve depression in other ways as well. Studies have shown it may reduce signals involved in inflammation, which have been linked to mood disorder, or facilitate communication within specific areas of the brain. In summary, Ketamine likely works in many ways that improve mood but also brain function as well. Studies are still ongoing but abundant clinical data now confirm that ketamine produces a remarkable rapid-onset antidepressant effect – hours or days – in contrast to the delayed onset (typically weeks) of current antidepressant and is particularly effective with anxious depression.

Adults with major depressive disorder given a single ketamine infusion have shown significant reductions in comorbid anxiety symptoms. Ketamine’s anxiolytic effects have also been supported by placebo-controlled trials. Randomized, placebo-controlled trials also suggest the possible benefit of ketamine for treating symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and post-traumatic stress disorder (Feder et al, 2014; Rodriguez et al, 2013).

Start your journey of self-investment with an optimistic outlook and schedule your office visit today with Dr. Stefanie Maass, PhD, FNP, FAARM at SSHH.

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