I was quite nervous about bringing my daughter in for ketamine infusions, partly because the treatment is relatively new, and partly because of the expense. But she had tried everything else available to her to manage her depression, including several different anti-depressants and several kinds of therapy. Nothing was working, and this illness had derailed her life to the extent that she had not been able to finish high school, or to hold a steady job.
At our first visit, my fears subsided, and I was greatly encouraged. The nurses are wonderful—kind and caring while still being very professional. And once my daughter had gone into one of the infusion rooms, Dr. Patel came into the waiting room and sat down to talk with me. To say he was patient would be an understatement. He listened as though he had no place else to be that day, and he answered my questions with candor, honesty, and compassion. That has been my same experience each and every time I’ve brought my daughter in for an infusion.
When my daughter was finished with the first infusion, she seemed only mildly woozy, but otherwise clear-headed and coherent. After the third infusion my daughter said she did not feel substantially different. Dr. Patel had told us that if we didn’t see a change after the third infusion, he didn’t recommend continuing treatment due to the expense. But we had prepared to pay for all six initial infusions if need be, and we were desperate for help. So we went back for a fourth infusion.
The change in my daughter after the fourth infusion was nothing short of miraculous. This is a young woman whose depression, as I said, made it difficult for her to stay in school, to hold a job, and to socialize. Within one day of the fourth infusion, she had applied for several jobs and interviewed for one of them. She now holds three (three!) jobs and is making plans, for the first time since she left high school, for a future we thought she might never have.
The effects of the ketamine wear off, for her, in around six weeks. So that’s how often I bring her back for a booster infusion. It’s an expense, to be sure, but it’s nothing compared to having to cover her rent, groceries, and other expenses when she is unable to work. We now pay for her ketamine infusions, but she is otherwise self-sufficient.
I’m grateful to the doctors and nurses at the Midwest Ketamine Clinic for the service they provide, and the professional, compassionate, and effective manner in which they provide it. And I’m grateful to them for giving my daughter the ability to lead a productive and meaningful life.