Ketamine has been shown to stimulate neuron growth in the brain in as quickly as one hour. Many scientists studying Ketamine are focusing on the neurotransmitter glutamate, which plays an important role in neural activation.
Patients will receive infusion therapy in a private room with constant mechanical monitoring of heart rate, pulse, blood oxygen saturation percentages and blood pressure. Infusion therapy means an IV will be placed and an appropriate dose of ketamine will be administered over a 40 min time frame or longer. Practitioners are able to see a patients vital signs from the monitors at all times from the nursing station. However, patients will notice that a practitioner will enter the patient treatment room several times during the active phase of the infusion to monitor the depth of sedation and ensure patient comfort. Most patients report a relaxing and peaceful experience. Patients will most likely experience changes in vision and their ability to clearly focus on objects or people, speech will be slurred or slowed, most will have an experience of floating or being disconnected. Patients on average should expect to spend 90 to 120 minutes in the office allowing for the check in procedure, the active phase of infusion and recovery time. Patients will need a trusted friend or family member to drive you home after your infusion. Patients may drive and return to work the next day. Patients may have a friend or family member in the treatment room during infusion, but this is not necessary.
Ketamine is absorbed by the body very differently and unreliably when taken orally or nasally and has not been shown to be as effective for depression. It is also difficult to get the levels high enough for the treatment to be effective when administered orally or nasally
Uncontrolled blood pressure, unstable heart disease, untreated thyroid disease, active substance abuse, current manic phase of bipolar disorder, or active psychotic (hallucinations or delusions) symptoms.
Most patients report significant improvement by the (3rd) third infusion and more than 80% report remission at the (4th) infusion. In addition, there are some patients that initially become aware of improvement in mood and well-being through loved ones such as a spouse, and this can occur after only one (1) infusion. Some patients want further gains before moving into maintenance and will continue to receive infusions at a frequency of two infusions per week until they reach remission or improvement levels they deem satisfactory. Typically this is achieved by the (6th) sixth infusion. IAT follows empirically proven protocols for loading dosages; 4 to 6 infusions delivered at a frequency of twice per week for 2 to 3 weeks. Once patients complete this loading dose protocol they begin the maintenance phase of treatment which is highly patient-specific. As a general rule, patients can expect to return for maintenance infusions about every 4 weeks for the first 12 months following treatment onset. At IAT we are seeing the effects of treatment as more durable over time, meaning patients appear to maintain results over longer periods of time and require fewer maintenance infusions after 12 months in the maintenance phase.
Approximately 70-80% of patients respond to ketamine infusions.
Currently ketamine infusion therapy is NOT a covered benefit by any insurance plan because it is considered an “off-label” use of this medication. Save MInds accepts cash and major credit cards. Save Minds requires payment at the time of treatment. CareCredit.com as well as other medical credit cards may be an option for patients who qualify, but no financing or payment plans are offered by Save MInds.