At my last Dr.’s appointment I had mentioned Ketamine to my Psychiatrist. He said no one was doing it and FDA approval was probably 5 to 6 years away. I mentioned to him that there is a doctor in our state using the nasal spray version for pain management. He looked at me funny and said that he “didn’t think this was true”. I had the doctor’s name and gave it to him. He is well known not just in my state but also New York and Massachusetts. I had a feeling patients were seeking him out for the use of the ketamine nasal spray for more than pain management it just wasn’t being disclosed. I also told my doctor that his own hospital had done a study on it. He didn’t know.
This drug, once the side effects are taken care of can lift a Bipolar patients Depressive state within 10 to 20 minutes in most cases. Right now there are ketamine clinics across the U.S. but you have to stay and be monitored while it is being done. Most clinics do it through transfusion and are using the version with the hallucinatory side effects. It is my understanding that the nasal spray does not have these side effects but may not be as effective.
Regardless, if this was another medication for erectile dysfunction it would already be on the market. The drug reps would be pushing it like candy. Because the people who take that type of medication are usually middle aged Caucasian men with good health insurance.
The people who usually are portrayed as taking psychiatric meds are poverty stricken, homeless, with no health insurance or are on State Assistance or Medicare.
The estimated cost of 1 ketamine infusion is $500. You need more than one and insurance doesn’t usually cover it. But they will cover ECT. Which does help some people I personally found it barbaric.
The other problem is finding a good doctor that is educated and open minded about your diagnoses. If you have Medicare good luck with that. The entire system is set up to encourage you to give up. I have a fairly decent education, I could barely fill out the forms. The hundreds of pages that are required. Then to go before a judge only to be humiliated by his snide remark “what? Didn’t you take your meds today?”. Then laughing. While my father sat in the back of the room with tears in his eyes and his fist balled up. It’s a good thing I had a lawyer to speak for me, and boy did he. He said ” for your information she has Conversion Disorder also which causes her to stutter I spoke about this disorder on the Senate floor recently”. And that was that. I cried a lot that day. They still make me have reviews every year unlike everyone else who has them every 5 to 7 years. Even though I have gotten worse and have had 2 prominent doctors say I can’t work plus brain scans that show cognitive damage. But I’ll deal with it as it comes. I can try to change the system a little at a time as long as it doesn’t change me.