IV ketamine infusion therapy is a fast, effective treatment for treatment-resistant depression and major depressive disorder, along with other conditions, and are FDA-approved.
Ketamine infusions have to be administered in a licensed clinic or hospital. Axis Integrated Mental Health’s team is trained to administer ketamine treatments intravenously safely.
Ketamine works by blocking NMDA receptors in the brain. NMDA receptors play an important role in learning and memory function. Blocking these receptors prevents them from binding with glutamate molecules. This can help in lowering depression and anxiety.
During a ketamine infusion, you may experience hallucinogenic effects. The real power of ketamine infusions occurs after the hallucinogenic effects subside. At this point, your brain can regrow connections between synapses that may have been damaged by depression.
Within 24 hours of your first dose of medically supervised ketamine, these lost connections start to regrow. As these synapses grow, there is an increase in Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) and neuroplasticity within the brain.
This allows your brain to rebuild pruned connections, allowing for balanced communication between the neural networks in the brain. The process results in a decrease in depression and anxiety. Ketamine allows your brain to heal and rebuild.
Ketamine has some advantages over other treatment options.
- Provides fast relief
- Duration of treatment only lasts for two to three weeks
- Doesn’t require ongoing usage of medication
The only disadvantage of ketamine treatment is that you need downtime after each session. Additionally, ketamine isn’t typically covered by insurance, so you will have to pay out-of-pocket for treatment.
Ketamine infusion therapy is personalized to meet your unique personal and medical needs. It is designed to provide you with long-term relief from previously untreatable mood conditions, including:
Ketamine infusions are an excellent option for improving symptoms of treatment-resistant depression and major depressive disorder.
Most patients notice profound changes after the third or fourth treatment. It can take repeated treatments over two to three weeks before you start to feel better and notice a difference in your symptoms.
Your comfort, safety, and experience are our top priority at Axis Integrated Mental Health.
When you come in, our trained staff will take you to one of our comfortable treatment rooms. We will adjust the light to your preferred setting and play relaxing music.
Then, we will connect you to our medical monitors and discuss your intention for the infusion.
Once the IV is placed, we will begin your infusion. The amount and length of your infusion are individually trailers to fit your needs. Most infusion sessions last between 40 minutes and 2 hours. Throughout that time, we will monitor you for safety and adjust the infusion as needed.
After your infusion is complete, we will give you an opportunity to journal, relax, or talk with us about your experience.
You can read out blog post on preparing for ketamine infusions for more information on getting the most from from you ketamine infusion experience.
Most of ketamine’s effects can be felt within minutes of use. The effect and range of these side effects can be unpredictable and include:
- Disorientation, confusion, and loss of motor coordination
- Dizziness, nausea, or vomiting
- Increase in blood pressure, heart rate, breathing, or body temperature
- Feeling detached from yourself, your surroundings, and your environment
Some patients also experience a strong urge to urinate right after treatment. These are generally temporary side effects that go away within a few hours. We recommend following treatment with relaxing activities.
Ketamine should never be taken with other drugs such as cocaine, methamphetamine, amphetamine, and MDMA. You also shouldn’t use alcohol or other central nervous system (CNS) depressants, such as marijuana.
Ketamine infusions are not covered by most health insurance plans, even for treatment-resistant depression.
At Axis Integrated Mental Health, we want all patients who need access to ketamine treatment to have it. Thus, we offer convenient, low-interest payment plans and can help you secure low-cost financing for your treatments. We want all patients who need access to ketamine infusions to be able to afford them.
Please read Ketamine Infusion Cost for more information.
Ketamine has been approved as a safe depression and mental health treatment by the FDA. Studies have shown that ketamine is just as safe as electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).
When administered by a team of medical professionals, as we have at Axis Integrated Mental Health, ketamine infusions are a safe procedure. All our providers have been board certified to administer ketamine to patients. Ketamine is safely used daily in hospitals and clinics around the world.
The side effects are minimal and mainly occur at the time of treatment.
Ketamine treatment isn’t the best option for everyone. It should not be used in patients who have a history of psychosis. It should not be used for patients who have active substance abuse problems.
It is also not recommended for individuals with heart conditions, uncontrolled hypertension, or similar conditions. In such cases, medical clearance and further testing are required to determine if treatment will be safe.
After a ketamine infusion, we do not allow patients to drive themselves home. We ask that a responsible driver be there to take patients home. Many patients use ride-sharing apps to take them to and from appointments.
We also ask that you don’t return to work or try to resume other daily activities after your treatment. Instead, we recommend that you relax and engage in some self-care.
Several factors impact how you will feel after your ketamine infusion.
- If you were feeling nervous or tired before your infusion, you are more likely to feel tired afterward. If you received a higher dosage, you are more likely to feel tired afterward as well.
- Some people feel nauseated or dizzy after their infusion. This feeling may last for several hours after your infusion.
- Please let us know if you get car sick or nauseated easily, and we can give you additional medications like Zofran to manage your symptoms during treatment.
You may also be vulnerable and emotionally raw, especially if you felt like you confronted some painful truths during your infusion. You may feel confused or uncertain, or you may feel inspired, peaceful, and introspective.
Some of our patients schedule telehealth appointments with their therapists from the comfort of their recovery rooms to help them process their experiences better. Please let us know if we can coordinate these sessions for you.
All of these reactions are normal responses. It is important to remember that your reaction is going to be unique to you. That is why we encourage you to talk to us about your experience and journal your thoughts and feelings.
Read our article on what to do after a ketamine therapy for more information.
If you suffer from treatment-resistant depression, major depressive disorder, or other mental health conditions, ketamine infusions may be the right treatment option for you.
Contact Axis Integrative Mental Health at (720) 400-7025 or fill out our contact us form to learn if ketamine infusions are the right treatment option for you.