Treating depression with ketamine

Got depression? You’re not alone. Approximately 300 million people around the world suffer from depression—many of whom don’t seek help or can’t find a treatment that works for them. That doesn’t have to be you.

With ketamine, you can beat depression and start living your best life.

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from a Nova Vita patient:

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What is ketamine?

Ketamine is a medication that helps alleviate acute and chronic pain—both physically and mentally. Best of all Ketamine works quickly and effectively, so you don’t have to wait weeks or even months like you would with other solutions. You can get back to loving your life right away.

Watch a success story from CNN:

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When was ketamine created?

Ketamine has a long history as a pain reliever.

Developed in 1962, ketamine was initially used as an anesthetic on battlefields, in operating rooms, and when children had negative reactions to other anesthetics. Soon after, it began being abused as a party drug—administered in ill-advised ways and used at high doses. It became tightly restricted and had a bad reputation for a while.

That all changed in the 1990s, when the Yale School of Medicine began researching ketamine as a potential treatment for depression. They found that ketamine effectively treats depression when administered correctly and at the right dosage. Further studies have shown similar results, even proving that ketamine can even be used effectively in patients with severe depression or suicidal tendencies.

Since this research, ketamine has been used by doctors across the world to treat depression.

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How does ketamine help with depression?

There are many ways that ketamine can help alleviate depression.

As research from the Yale School of Medicine has found, ketamine triggers glutamate production, prompting the brain to form new neural connections. This could allow the brain to be more adaptable and to create new pathways, which would in turn provide an opportunity to create more positive thoughts and behaviors.

Ketamine may also reduce signals in inflammation (which has been linked to mood disorders in past studies) or help aid communication within certain areas of the brain.

Regardless how it helps, one of the pioneers of ketamine research—John Krystal, M.D.—said in an interview that ketamine is a game-changer.

"With most medications, like valium, the anti-anxiety effect you get only lasts when it is in your system," Krystal said.

"When the valium goes away, you can get rebound anxiety. When you take ketamine, it triggers reactions in your cortex that enable brain connections to regrow. It’s the reaction to ketamine, not the presence of ketamine in the body that constitutes its effects."

This long-term effect is one of the reasons so many in the field consider ketamine the most important breakthrough in antidepressant treatment in decades.

Other uses for ketamine

Ketamine has also effectively been used to treat the following:

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Chronic pain
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Suicidal ideation
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Sources:   Ketamine, Center for Substance Abuse Research; How New Ketamine Drug Helps with Depression, Yale Medicine; Ketamine for major depression: New tool, new questions, Harvard Health Publishing; What You Need to Know About Ketamine’s Effects, WebMD; Ketamine: Exploring continuation-phase treatment for depression, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER); Highlight: Ketamine: A New (and Faster) Path to Treating Depression, National Institute of Mental Health; What are the uses of ketamine?, Medical News Today; Depression, World Health Organization

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