Ketamine for Chronic PainMyrtle Beach, SC
Chronic pain differs from acute or induced pain as its unrelenting symptoms can last anywhere from several weeks to years. Persistent pain continuously signals the nervous system, causing constant aches and pains to certain body parts. Most chronic pain stems from an underlying health condition, illness, or injury, but it may also arise because of genetic factors. Ketamine has seen a dramatic surge in successfully treating chronic pain and depression through various methods.
Ketamine treatment for chronic pain is available at Future Psych Ketamine Clinics and the surrounding area. Patients should not have to wait for the pain to subside or take medications for temporary relief. It is essential to understand what ketamine is and how it works to properly assess whether it may help aid in relieving your symptoms and pain. Call us today at 843-788-9718 to learn more about our services or schedule an appointment.
Causes and Symptoms of Chronic Pain
There are many conditions, illnesses, diseases, and triggers that result in chronic pain. Chronic pain refers to persistent pain that lasts at least 12 weeks and could extend to years; in some cases, a lifetime. Chronic pain can result in intense headaches and migraines, post-surgery pain, post-trauma pain, lower back pain, cancer pain, neurogenic pain, and psychogenic pain.
The main causes of chronic pain are inflammation and dysfunctional nerves. Other causes include chronic fatigue syndrome, endometriosis, fibromyalgia, inflammatory bowel disease, interstitial cystitis, TMJ, and vulvodynia. Patients at higher risk of developing chronic pain are those with an injury, those who have undergone surgery, females, and those that are overweight or obese.
Chronic pain can usually be self-diagnosed because of its persistent and unbearable pain. Without professional treatment, it can be difficult to identify the source or causes of the pain, along with developing the proper treatment method. Symptoms of chronic pain may differ slightly depending on the location, cause, and the patient’s level of tolerance. The most common symptoms include pain in the back, joints, mouth and face, muscles and bones, or neck, anxiety, fatigue, headaches and migraines, and sleep deprivation. Pain can have psychological factors, can cause or result in fear and depression, and may increase sensitivity to pain over time.
What is Ketamine?
Ketamine is a medication used to start and maintain anesthesia, putting patients in a dream-like state while relieving pain. The drug is classified as class III as it produces hallucinogenic, tranquilizing, and dissociative effects when used recreationally. When used medicinally, we alter dosage to ensure patient safety and avoid addiction.
Ketamine has been a breakthrough drug for treating various chronic pain and psychological conditions such as depression. For medical purposes, ketamine is either injected into the muscle or given through an IV. Legal ketamine use is restricted to hospitals and medical centers so it can be monitored during treatment.
How Ketamine Works for Chronic Pain
Ketamine was historically used on the battlefields and in surgeries to counter intolerable pain. It works as a proper anesthetic as it does not reduce blood pressure or lower the breathing rate of patients, but contains the same therapeutic properties as other medicinal pain relievers at a higher level. Ketamine can also help in procedures such as cardiac catheterization, skin grafts, orthopedic surgeries, dental extractions, and psych treatments.
Although the reasoning is unclear, ketamine has been a promising treatment for major depression. According to Harvard Health, "If a person responds to ketamine, it can rapidly reduce suicidality (life-threatening thoughts and acts) and relieve other serious symptoms of depression. Ketamine also can be effective for treating depression combined with anxiety." Other methods for treating depression, such as talk therapies, antidepressants, and ECT therapies, take weeks or months to reduce symptoms or completely treat patients. Ketamine is a stronger-acting agent that also reduces the risk of relapse or recurrence.
Benefits of Ketamine
Ketamine’s medicinal benefits are many and cover a wide array of conditions. Its 3 main benefits are:
- Relieving pain: at smaller doses, Ketamine helps sedatives work without the use of addictive painkillers, such as morphine.
- Treating depression: Ketamine reduces symptoms such as suicidal thoughts or ill feelings of the self by regrowing connections in the brain.
- Works quickly: contrary to almost all other depression treatments, Ketamine works in minutes and may produce mood changes within the same day.
Although Ketamine is a scheduled class III drug and known to cause addiction and other side effects, its use in a medical facility through monitorization of a medical professional largely outweighs these risks. The benefits associated with psychiatric treatments, surgeries, and chronic pain relief have changed many people’s lives, especially those who have undergone all other possible treatments for the condition. The FDA has approved of its use in medical centers and hospitals and is in the process of approving its use for medicinal purposes.
Managing Chronic Pain
It is important to manage chronic pain once a patient has undergone treatment to maintain Ketamine’s effects and avoid relapse. In cases of surgery, the drug may only be administered during treatment and the patient given a smaller dose painkiller. However, in treating anxiety and depression, Ketamine is usually administered during several visits to monitor a patient’s progress with both the drug and their condition.
Patients who have had successful treatments with the use of Ketamine should practice certain relaxing methods at home to mitigate any pain that arises. Some proven practices for reducing chronic pain at home include:
- Deep breathing exercises and meditation
- Reducing stress (stress intensifies chronic pain)
- Cutting back on drinking and smoking
- Joining a support group
- Tracking pain levels and progress daily
- Getting a chronic pain massage
- Eating healthy
Do Not Delay
Be proactive in relieving chronic pain or treating a mental condition. We at Future Psych Ketamine Clinics look forward to treating you and getting you back to a pain-free life. Call us now at 843-788-9718 to learn more and schedule an appointment.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do ketamine injections hurt?
In some cases, a nasal spray is used to administer Ketamine. However, in most medicinal cases, Ketamine is injected through an IV. The most painful part of the injection is the insertion of the needle. Once that is done, you will not feel a thing.
What happens during a Ketamine infusion treatment?
We will take your temperature and check your weight to determine the dosage and duration of treatment. We administer the injection and dim the lights to allow for a relaxing environment during treatment. The patient will experience enhanced relaxation and pain relief for about an hour. The treatment process differs with each individual case; this is discussed thoroughly during the consultation appointment and prior to Ketamine treatment.
Is Ketamine safe?
Ketamine is considered safe in medical settings and approved by the FDA because it does not affect the protective airway reflexes or depress the circulatory system. Ketamine has faced a lot of controversy because of its known addictive properties and its fatal risks when used recreationally. However, patients who receive controlled ketamine administrations have not been found to become addicted to the drug.
What are the risks associated with ketamine?
Risks of ketamine differ from patient to patient and depend on the dosage, use, and purpose. Nonetheless, its risks include disturbing sensations upon awakening, increasing blood pressure, intracranial pressure and pressure on the brain, nausea, vomiting, psychosis, amnesia, impaired motor functions, and memory loss. We monitor and assess patients using ketamine for chronic pain to avoid these risks.
What does a ketamine infusion feel like?
Most patients have reported feeling relaxed and pain-free. The drug produces an abrupt high feeling, giving the patient an out-of-body experience. They may feel like they are floating or seeing their body from the outside. In higher doses, more intense feelings arise in which a person may feel they are unable to move or talk and are out of their body; this is referred to as the “K-hole.” Patients experiencing adverse effects should immediately inform their provider or seek emergency attention if at home.
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