Prior to your first appointment, you will fill out a medical history questionnaire and supporting documentation. We will ask you to fill out a medical release so we may consult with your physician. We will then determine if you are a good candidate and streamline the process for your visit. The initial consultation is completed over the phone to help expedite your treatment. At your first treatment visit, we will again go over the treatment plan and goals, review the risks and benefits of the procedure, and answer any further questions you may have.
This is considered the standard of care among Ketamine providers at this time. Patient typically receive a series of 6 infusions over the course of approximately 2 weeks for mood disorders. Each infusion typically lasts about 45-55 minutes. Most clinical trials have consistently shown a 70% success rate with this approach. The treatment does require booster infusions as time passes to keep the effect going and to keep patients symptom free. These boosters are the same duration, but single infusions rather than a series of infusions done during the loading phase.
For pain syndromes, patients typically receive anywhere from 3-10 infusions lasting 4 hours over the course of a few weeks. Again, these treatments require boosters as time goes on, and the time between boosters is usually related to how many treatments were originally done during the loading phase.
We have employed this route almost exclusively in the first year and half we had been taking care of patients and know it works. It is superior to intramuscular shots as well as intranasal and sublingual Ketamine. We are able to rapidly deliver medicine in a safe manner to give patients the best chance of symptom relief.
This is a novel approach to Ketamine administration. We are able to deliver Ketamine via a nebulizer mask and the Ketamine is inhaled into your lungs, much the same way asthma patients inhale their asthma medications. Pharmacokinetics of Ketamine allow for this delivery method very easily, and the only real loss is that we must use more Ketamine to get the same overall blood levels in your body. We lose a fair amount of medicine to the surrounding air due to the way nebulizers mist away much of the solution to room air. This delivery method allows us to reduce cost significantly, as we are not using any IV equipment. We still monitor our patients with cardiac monitors and will administer any medications required as adjuncts to help you tolerate the Ketamine safely. In a series of patients we have tested this on at our facility, we have had great results. The pharmacokinetics of Ketamine allow nebulized Ketamine to be an effective delivery method. We have tried this on existing IV infusion patients as well as new patients naive to ketamine. The only additional side effect from this delivery method, as opposed to intravenous delivery, is that you will experience the medicinal taste of Ketamine in your mouth. However, patients generally tolerate this fine, and this minor inconvenience does not detract from the Ketamine’s ability to ease your symptoms. We will typically perform the first treatment with IV Ketamine to make sure we can easily give any adjuncts if necessary, but if the patient tolerates this infusion well, than we will switch over to the nebulized Ketamine if the patient wishes for all future treatments.
For mood disorder treatments, patients will still receive a treatment lasting approximately 55 minutes. They will likely have a slightly longer recovery time of about 30-40 minutes as it takes a little bit longer to fully absorb all the medicine you received via the nebulizer.
On a case by case basis, we may consider nebulized treatment for pain patients, but prolonged Ketamine exposure with higher doses, which is generally required for pain patients, means they typically require more adjunct medications, thus requiring IV placement.
Our hope is to be able to deliver Ketamine to many more patients using this method as we can pass on our cost savings to you. Ketamine is truly revolutionary for patients with mood disorders and neuropathic pain disorders. This delivery method will hopefully allow us to give so many more people the help they need.