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Ketamine used to treat bipolar disorder and depression

Ketamine is a recreational drug, also a drug commonly used as surgical anesthesia. A new study found that the drug taken by injection also improves moods within minutes for individuals with bipolar disorder. Patients who are diagnosed as bipolar or with depression may have very serious symptoms, including thoughts of suicide. For suffers in California and nationwide, mental illness requires ongoing medical treatment. It can also leave patients in need of Social Security disability benefits.

A recent study found that patients who were unresponsive to standard drugs, including lithium and valproate were receptive to injections of Ketamine. Patients were given a ketamine injection and a placebo injection on two separate visits, two weeks apart. Doctors measured depression symptoms using standard measures and the patients were given review at 40, 80, 110, and 230 minutes. The symptoms were reviewed again on days 1, 2, 3, 7, 10 and 14. Research revealed that the depression symptoms decreased by the first 40 minutes and the lowered symptoms lasted for up to two weeks.

Doctors concluded that the use of ketamine reduced symptoms as well as thoughts of suicide. Ketamine has been used as a recreational drug and causes hallucinations, nightmares, and euphoria. Some critics believe that because of the potential for addiction and abuse, it is not likely to be used as a first treatment, but may be helpful for severe cases involving patients who could not be treated by other drugs.

If you or someone you love has been diagnosed as bipolar or depressed, be sure to consult with medical and legal professionals about your rights and options. Individual treatment plans can ensure that you are making the most improvement possible. A legal advocate can ensure that you are collecting the full benefits you are entitled to. If you have been denied benefits in the past, you may be entitled to an appeal.

Source: Daily RX, " Ketamine to treat bipolar depression," Kristi Davis, June 10, 2012.

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