What is Ketamine Treatment?
Ketamine treatment, also known as ketamine therapy, involves the use of ketamine to alleviate symptoms of conditions such as depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It is typically administered intravenously or via a intramuscular injection.
The use of ketamine in mental health treatment is still a relatively new area of research but early studies have shown promising results. One of the benefits of ketamine treatment is that it can work quickly, often bringing about a noticeable improvement in symptoms within hours or days of treatment.
IV and Intramuscular Ketamine Treatment
Ketamine can be delivered in various ways, and its effectiveness can vary. The effectiveness of intramuscular administration is comparable to IV infusion.
To summarize, the differences between these two methods can be outlined as follows:
IV Ketamine VS. Intramuscular
Starting an IV infusion typically involves only one needle stick, while intramuscular injections may require multiple injections during a treatment session.
The dosage of an IV infusion can be adjusted, reduced, or stopped in response to a patient’s reaction during treatment. In contrast, intramuscular administration cannot be adjusted or reversed after injection.
Some patients report that the symptom relief provided by IV infusions lasts longer between treatments compared to intramuscular injections. As a result, patients receiving intramuscular treatment may need to receive more frequent treatments.
The onset and recovery rate of the medication is also different between the two methods. Intramuscular injection has a rapid onset, which can be uncomfortable for some patients, and a slower recovery. In contrast, IV infusion has a more gradual onset and recovery.
If any adverse side effects occur during an intramuscular injection, reassurance and sometimes other medications may be necessary to counteract them and allow the medication to run its course since the administration cannot be stopped.
Both IV ketamine and intramuscular ketamine administration of ketamine require supervision by a licensed, prescribing healthcare provider who has received specific training in the use of ketamine. Monitoring a patient’s vital signs throughout the treatment is also essential for ensuring their safety.
How Does Ketamine Treatment Work?
Ketamine is an N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist. NMDA receptors are a type of receptor in the brain that are involved in the transmission of pain signals and the regulation of mood and cognition. By blocking these receptors, ketamine may help to alleviate pain and improve mood.
In addition to its effects on NMDA receptors, ketamine also affects other brain chemicals, such as glutamate, serotonin, and dopamine. These chemicals are involved in the regulation of mood, motivation, and reward. By modulating the activity of these neurotransmitters, ketamine may help to reduce symptoms of depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions.