How does Ketamine work?
Ketamine works with your brain chemistry by resetting your receptors. For example, for a chronic pain patient they have NMDA pain receptors that fire when in pain. Ketamine works with your brain chemistry by resetting those receptors and building new long term connections, coined neural plasticity. In doing so, it also helps with your mood and stabilizing your emotions. Hence, you can try to work with your provider to wean down on your medication, and overall see a change in your attitude.
What does Ketamine treat?
Ketamine is useful for the treatment of Chronic Pain, Migraines, Depression, Anxiety, Neuropathy, Inflammatory Pain, Fibromyalgia, Bipolar Disorder or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
What can I expect during the Ketamine infusion?
We at RISE wellness centers want to ensure that each patient has a comfortable and enjoyable visit. Each patient will have a private room where a family member or friend is welcome to stay throughout a session. Each infusion lasts about 60 minutes. Some patients may feel drowsy during treatment, while others may feel a floating sensation or their feet feel "tingly", it is very specific to each patient. However, these sensations disappear after the infusion is over.
How long are the infusions?
Ketamine infusions will be administered over 60 minutes, followed by a short recovery period. You should expect to be with us in the clinic for about two hours total, to ensure the proper paperwork is completed as well.
Safety of Ketamine?
Ketamine has seen wide usage as an anesthetic in adults and children since the 1950s, and even at anesthetic doses (about 2-6 times higher than the dose used to treat depression). To greater ensure the safety of our infusions, all patients are monitored by a board-certified medical professional during treatment, with any treatment there is always risks but we try to mitigate as many as possible.
Does insurance cover this?
Ketamine has been used since the 1950s. It has been generic for a very long time, approved for use as an anesthetic. In fact, Ketamine itself is FDA approved, but in this setting we administer Ketamine in an off-label use. Harvard is working with the FDA to have the medication approved, but in the mean time it is self-pay.
What do I do before the infusion?
Continue your daily activities. On the day of the infusion, you may drive yourself here to the clinic, but we require that someone else gives you a ride home. We also request that you do not operate a motor vehicle for the rest of the day, this ensures safety and proper precautions. We also recommend to not eat or drink anything six hours prior to the infusion.
Can I stop my medications?
We do not recommend stopping your medications during treatment. We have found that many people ultimately require reduced doses of their medications, or can stop certain drugs altogether. We leave that important decision to you and your psychiatrist or your pain management specialist.
Do I need a referral?
While we do not require a formal referral, we will need to document a chronic, treatment-resistant condition in your medical history. This can be accomplished easily through medical records.
How long will the results last?
This varies between each patient based on the severity of their conditions and how long the duration has lasted. For some, one infusion works wonders while for others, a package is a more suitable option.
How do I know if it worked?
Most patients report a reduction in their symptoms the day of the infusion! That is why we always encourage patients to at least try one infusion and they will know if it works for them. Once the initial infusion is complete, we can devise a plan to schedule the rest to follow.