Chronic Pain Treatment



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Ketamine and NMDA

Ketamine is in a class of drugs called NMDA (short for N-methyl-D-aspartate) receptor antagonists, which have been shown to be effective in the treatment of major depressive disorder and other mental health conditions. Research shows that ketamine positively affects a wide range of cellular processes, including the blockade of NMDA channels. While ketamine blocks NMDA receptors; it produces a paradoxical increase in brain levels of glutamate, the neurotransmitter that excites NMDA receptors. Recent studies that found that a low dose of ketamine, which alters glutamate system activity, can rapidly eliminate depression in two-thirds of patients who do not respond to conventional antidepressants.

Ketamine and Glutamate

Neurons in the brain need a chemical called glutamate to communicate with each other. The neurons need glutamate receptors -- like a boat dock for glutamate -- to communicate. Clinical studies have shown IV ketamine therapy works by helping to “restock” the brain’s neurons with new glutamate receptors, allowing for the neurons to communicate with each other along new pathways. This process has been shown to have significant positive effects on mood disorders like treatment-resistant depression and severe anxiety. Many patients report a substantial reduction in their symptoms after just one infusion.

Ketamine VS Antidepressants

According to the World Health Organization, depression affects nearly 300 million people worldwide. Despite its prevalence, traditional antidepressants such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors are only effective in treating about 30% of patients suffering from mood disorders. Oral antidepressants also typically require several weeks to several months to produce a therapeutic response. IV ketamine therapy, on the other hand, has been shown to reduce symptoms in patients in as little as 4 hours after the first infusion.
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We believe ketamine therapy is part of a comprehensive mental health plan, and we look forward to collaborating with primary mental health providers.

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