Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy
The Treatment that Can Break Through
Ketamine seems to help most with depression, anxiety, and trauma, but especially well for depression. Ketamine is off label, meaning it isn't approved by the FDA for treating mental health conditions, it is approved as anesthesia. Many medications, including ketamine, are safely used off label. Ketamine often works quickly, sometimes people even start to feel better during the first session. Usually a series of sessions are recommended to more fully treat mental health problems. Ketamine can be used as a medicine only or it can also be used in combination with therapy to create a powerful synergy that can speed up the healing work you already do in therapy.
How Ketamine Works
We don't totally know why or how ketamine works. It is known to work in the brain by affecting the function of multiple neurotransmitters and ultimately ends up improving neurotransmission of important neurotransmitters, reducing inflammation, growing new dendrites, and increasing neuroplasticity in the brain. Meaning, the brain actually changes and improves its physical structure as well as how it functions after receiving ketamine (the same happens with psilocybin-see the image to the right, it also happens with SSRI's-but is slower). The overall effect is the potential to reduce mental health symptoms and emotional suffering. Some of these positive effects may be long lasting, while others are short lived and may be why some people need ongoing treatment with ketamine to maintain the positive effects.
Research suggests 60% of people have a positive response to ketamine and has been shown to be as effective as some antidepressants.
Ketamine can also create a meaningful psycho-spiritual experience. The psychedelic or trance effects of ketamine can evoke deeply meaningful spiritual or psychological experiences.
If you would like to bring your therapist to the session or have the session at your therapist's office we can do that as well. Home visits are available in some circumstances as well.
Side effects are usually mild and transient and are explained in more detail in the informed consent below.
Interesting ketamine reads:
Listening to Ketamine or
Ketamine—50 years in use: from anesthesia to rapid antidepressant effects and neurobiological mechanisms
Contact us to learn more about how ketamine could help you.
Ketamine Session Fees:
Psychiatric Evaluation $350
Ketamine Medicine Session $400
Psychotherapy Session $250
No show or late cancellation $125
(24 hours notice)
Travel fee to your home or $100-200+ based on distance.
You can have your therapist attend the ketamine sessions with you, as well, though their fees are separate.
Unfortunately, because ketamine is not approved by the FDA, it is also not covered by insurance. The psychiatric evaluation often is covered by insurance based on your plan coverage.
Brainfacts.org Listening to Ketamine
New York Times Opinion: I Was Paralyzed by Severe Depression. Then Came Ketamine.
Ketamine—50 years in use: from anesthesia to rapid antidepressant effects and neurobiological mechanisms.
Ketamine and serotonergic psychedelics: An update on the mechanisms and biosignatures underlying rapid-acting antidepressant treatment
Clinical use of ketamine in psychiatric disorders
Single i.v. ketamine augmentation of newly initiated escitalopram for major depression: results from a randomized, placebo-controlled 4-week study
What I wish I'd known before ketamine therapy
Worth the trip: psychedelics as an emerging tool for psychotherapy.
Ketamine exerts its sustained antidepressant effects via cell-type-specific regulation of Kcnq2
Is (R)-ketamine a potential therapeutic agent for treatment-resistant depression with less detrimental side effects? A review of molecular mechanisms underlying ketamine and its enantiomers.
Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP): Patient Demographics, Clinical Data and Outcomes in Three Large Practices Administering Ketamine with Psychotherapy.
Ketamine as an antidepressant: overview of its mechanisms of action and potential predictive biomarkers
Ketamine for treatment-resistant depression: recent developments and clinical applications.
Repurposing Ketamine in Depression and Related Disorders: Can This Enigmatic Drug Achieve Success?
About MDMA and Psilocybin Assisted Psychotherapy
Nature Medicine: MDMA-assisted therapy for severe PTSD: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled phase 3 study.
Frontiers in Psychiatry: Breakthrough for Trauma Treatment: Safety and Efficacy of MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy Compared to Paroxetine and Sertraline.
Neural mechanisms underlying psilocybin’s therapeutic potential – the need for preclinical in vivo electrophysiology.
Visualization of the brain connections in the brain of a person on psilocybin (right) and the brain of a person not given the drug (left) showing higher connectivity and plasticity after psilocybin. From the Journal of the Royal Society Interface.