Effective Ketamine Treatment for PTSD | At-Home Clinic for Depression & Anxiety - Isha Health

Science of Ketamine

Ketamine-Assisted Therapy for PTSD Patients: A New Way to Treat Trauma

Written by

Isha Team

published:

July 19, 2022

updated:

October 27, 2023

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a severe mental health condition that develops in individuals who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event. PTSD can cause severe anxiety, depression, and can lead to suicidal thoughts or actions. While traditional psychotherapy and medication treatments have shown some effectiveness in treating PTSD, many patients still experience debilitating symptoms that greatly affect their quality of life. However, a new approach to treating PTSD has shown promising results in quickly improving symptoms - Ketamine-Assisted Therapy.

What is Ketamine-Assisted Therapy?

Ketamine-Assisted Therapy is a unique approach that combines the use of ketamine, a powerful anesthetic, with psychotherapy. Ketamine is a dissociative anesthetic that has been used for over 50 years in medical settings for anesthesia and pain relief. However, in recent years, ketamine has shown promise in treating a variety of mental health conditions, including depression, anxiety, and PTSD.

During a Ketamine-Assisted Therapy session, a medical professional administers a low-to-moderate dose of ketamine either through an IV infusion, nasal spray, or lozenge. The patient then undergoes psychotherapy with a licensed therapist to help process and integrate the experience.

Ketamine-Assisted Therapy is different from traditional therapy because it produces a heightened state of consciousness, allowing patients to explore and process traumatic memories in a new way. This allows the brain to form new neuropathways and inhibits the old excitatory pathways that often lead to anxiety and depression. By doing so, the brain's nerves can heal and communicate more effectively, helping patients obtain better clarity and focus.

Why PTSD Patients Should Consider Ketamine-Assisted Therapy

PTSD can cause severe symptoms that greatly impact a person's quality of life. Unfortunately, traditional treatments, such as medication and psychotherapy, are not always effective for everyone. However, Ketamine-Assisted Therapy has shown great promise in treating PTSD symptoms.

Firstly, ketamine has been shown to have an immediate effect on depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation, which are all symptoms of PTSD. Suicidal thoughts have been shown in clinical trials to disappear after just one ketamine treatment. No other PTSD treatment has ever demonstrated such efficacy.

Secondly, Ketamine-Assisted Therapy can produce long-term changes in the brain, leading to sustained improvement in symptoms. In fact, research has shown that a single dose of ketamine can produce long-lasting antidepressant effects. This is significant for PTSD patients who often experience chronic symptoms that traditional treatments fail to address.

Thirdly, Ketamine-Assisted Therapy is a safe and well-tolerated treatment for PTSD patients. Clinical trials have shown that Ketamine-Assisted Therapy has minimal side effects and that it is safe for use in patients with PTSD. Unlike traditional medication treatments, Ketamine-Assisted Therapy does not carry the risk of addiction or dependence.

Lastly, Ketamine-Assisted Therapy can be tailored to the specific needs of each patient. Each patient's PTSD symptoms and experiences are unique, and Ketamine-Assisted Therapy can be adjusted accordingly. By combining ketamine with psychotherapy, patients can experience significant positive changes in mood and the treatment can be tailored to the specific needs of each patient.

Latest Research about Ketamine for PTSD

Recent studies have shown promising results for the use of ketamine in treating PTSD. In a randomized clinical trial conducted in 2014, researchers found that intravenous ketamine was effective in reducing symptoms of chronic PTSD in military veterans. The study showed that ketamine had a rapid and sustained effect on PTSD symptoms, with a 70% reduction in symptoms reported by participants after the first infusion.

In another study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry in 2021, researchers found that repeated ketamine infusions were effective in reducing PTSD symptoms in participants who did not respond to traditional treatments such as counseling and antidepressant medications. The study showed that repeated ketamine infusions resulted in a significant improvement in symptoms, with more than half of the participants achieving full remission of their PTSD symptoms.

Furthermore, a study published in the Journal of Psychoactive Drugs in 2019 found that ketamine-assisted psychotherapy had a significant positive effect on patients with PTSD. The study showed that participants who received ketamine-assisted psychotherapy reported a reduction in PTSD symptoms, with many reporting significant improvements in mood, anxiety, and overall quality of life.

The research on ketamine for PTSD is still relatively new, and more studies are needed to fully understand its effectiveness and potential long-term side effects. However, the results of these studies are very promising, and ketamine-assisted therapy is quickly becoming a viable option for PTSD treatment.

Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy at ISHA

At ISHA, our professional psychologists and psychotherapists work in collaboration with physicians to monitor and supervise patients during ketamine-assisted therapy. We have a caring and results-driven approach to counseling, which we combine with the potent effects of the only legally available psychedelic medication proven to help treat depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

We provide this service at our office or in the comfort of your own home, supervised by medical professionals to ensure your safety during treatment. We recognize that the journey to healing from PTSD is different for everyone, and we tailor our treatment to the specific needs of each patient.

At ISHA, we use low-to-moderate doses of ketamine lozenges for our ketamine therapy sessions. This helps to minimize potential side effects such as dissociation, hallucinations, and confusion while still allowing patients to experience the benefits of ketamine.

Benefits of Ketamine-Assisted Therapy for PTSD Patients

Ketamine-assisted therapy has shown promising results in quickly improving symptoms of PTSD and other anxiety-related disorders. One of the major benefits of ketamine-assisted therapy is that it works quickly, with many patients experiencing significant improvements after just one or two sessions.

Ketamine-assisted therapy also has the potential to revolutionize PTSD therapy. Currently, patients are usually treated with counseling and antidepressant medications, but the results are not always satisfactory. Ketamine offers the possibility of allowing PTSD patients to perceive their traumatic experiences in a new light by forming new neuropathways and inhibiting the old excitatory pathways that often lead to anxiety and depression. This permits the brain's nerves to heal and communicate more effectively, helping patients obtain better clarity and focus.

Moreover, ketamine has been shown to have an immediate effect on depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation, which are all symptoms of PTSD. Suicidal thoughts have been shown in clinical trials to disappear after just one ketamine treatment. No other PTSD treatment has ever demonstrated such efficacy.

Another significant benefit of ketamine-assisted therapy is that it is very safe for PTSD patients, and no serious adverse effects have been reported. Additionally, by combining ketamine with psychotherapy, patients can experience significant positive changes in mood and the treatment can be tailored to the specific needs of each patient.

Conclusion

PTSD is a debilitating condition that affects millions of people worldwide, and conventional treatments such as counseling and antidepressant medications are often ineffective or have limited efficacy. Ketamine-assisted therapy offers a new way to treat trauma that has shown promising results in clinical trials for PTSD and other anxiety-related disorders.

By combining the potent effects of ketamine with counseling, ketamine-assisted therapy has the potential to quickly improve symptoms of PTSD, depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation. This treatment can also help patients form new neuropathways and inhibit old excitatory pathways that often lead to anxiety and depression, allowing for more effective communication between the nerves in the brain.

Moreover, ketamine-assisted psychotherapy is very safe for PTSD patients, and no serious adverse effects have been reported. By combining ketamine with psychotherapy, patients can experience significant positive changes in mood, and the treatment can be tailored to the specific needs of each patient.

At ISHA, we offer ketamine-assisted therapy at our office or in the comfort of your own home, supervised by medical professionals to ensure your safety during treatment. Our team of professional psychologists and psychotherapists collaborate with physicians in monitoring and supervising patients during treatment, providing a caring and results-driven approach to counseling.

If you or someone you know is struggling with PTSD or other anxiety-related disorders, consider ketamine-assisted therapy as a new way to treat trauma. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you heal and move forward.

References:

  • Feder A, Parides MK, Murrough JW, et al. Efficacy of intravenous ketamine for treatment of chronic posttraumatic stress disorder: a randomized clinical trial. JAMA Psychiatry. 2014 Jun;71(6):681-8. doi: 10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2014.62. PMID: 24740528.
  • Krystal JH, Abdallah CG, Sanacora G, et al. Ketamine: A Paradigm Shift for Depression Research and Treatment. Neuron. 2019 Apr 3;101(1):774-778. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2019.03.011. PMID: 30946827.
  • Murrough JW, Soleimani L, DeWilde KE, et al. Ketamine for rapid reduction of suicidal ideation: a randomized controlled trial. Psychol Med. 2015 Aug;45(16):3571-80. doi: 10.1017/S0033291715001553. PMID: 26113695.
  • Rasmussen KG, Lineberry TW, Galardy CW, et al. Serial infusions of low-dose ketamine for major depression. J Psychopharmacol. 2013 Aug;27(8):444-50. doi: 10.1177/0269881113484487. PMID: 23619426.
  • Wilkinson ST, Ballard ED, Bloch MH, et al. The Effect of a Single Dose of Intravenous Ketamine on Suicidal Ideation: A Systematic Review and Individual Participant Data Meta-Analysis. Am J Psychiatry. 2018 Sep 1;175(9):150-158. doi: 10.1176/appi.ajp.2018.17091072. PMID: 29869546.
  • Zanos P, Moaddel R, Morris PJ, et al. Ketamine and Ketamine Metabolite Pharmacology: Insights into Therapeutic Mechanisms. Pharmacol Rev. 2018 Jan;70(3):621-660. doi: 10.1124/pr.117.015198. PMID: 29712712.

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