Major depression that does not respond to treatment is a life-threatening condition. It binds its victims to an unrelenting melancholy, diminishing their quality of life, while often tormenting them with thoughts of suicide. Among individuals suffering from severe major depression, about 30% will suffer melancholy over a lengthy period, and experience no relief from conventional antidepressant medication or psychotherapy.
But scientists have been busy. Researchers are beginning to unlock the mysteries of treatment-resistant depression. They are exploring neurochemical causes of depression and developing new strategies that hold promise for more effective, rapid-acting treatment, like ketamine. Depression that is hard to manage with more traditional methods has been responsive. Call 844-876-7680 to learn more.
Ketamine for Depression
Ketamine was introduced in 1962 and is on the World Health Organization’s Model List of Essential Medicines. Some know ketamine as a Schedule III narcotic, used in anesthesia. Others know it as a hallucinogen that has been abused as a street drug. But there is strong clinical evidence that ketamine treatment quickly reduces the effects of depression.
For this reason, our clinical team has consulted with Dr. Steven Levine, a board-certified psychiatrist and nationally recognized expert in the use of ketamine for depression, to bring ketamine treatment to clients at The Ranch treatment center. Our team has developed a state-of-the-art protocol for the use of ketamine in the treatment of depression. The medication is administered under the direction of our medical director, who is a licensed physician board certified in psychiatry, anesthesiology and addiction medicine. The results are very promising.
How Does Ketamine Treatment Work?
Brain imaging studies strongly suggest that patients suffering from depression are neurologically different from individuals who don’t have depression. That is, not only is the distribution of neurochemicals in the brain (like serotonin) different, but the brain functions differently at the cellular level. Structures known as synapses, which allow neurons to communicate with each other, are not as functional or active as they are in non-depressed individuals.
Ketamine therapy has been shown to increase the number of synaptic connections between brain cells, which has a powerful, fast-acting effect on depression. Because ketamine is chemically different from traditional antidepressants, it is providing new information about the neurobiology of depression, and some researchers are hopeful that it could eventually lead to a new class of antidepressants.
Who Is a Good Candidate for Ketamine?
Ketamine has been found effective for severely depressed patients who have not responded to medication or have intolerable side effects from medication. It has been found effective for people suffering from depression accompanied by sleep or eating disorders, and it may be appropriate for someone suffering from severe, long-standing bereavement and isolation caused by bereavement.
Ketamine is contraindicated in someone who has a recent history of substance use disorder or a person in the early stages of recovery.
Ketamine is a powerful medication that’s used to combat a lethal illness. It is only considered for inclusion in a client’s treatment plan if our multidisciplinary team determines that the potential benefits of ketamine therapy outweigh any risks. For individuals suffering from severe, debilitating depression, it can be truly lifesaving.
Get innovative care to change your life. Call us at 844-876-7680 for a free consultation.