Every year, 13 million to 14 million Americans have major depression. Of those who seek treatment, 30% to 40% will not get better or fully recover with standard antidepressants. That puts them at greater risk of alcohol and drug abuse, hospitalization, and suicide attempts.
Studies and our practices at Alabama Clinics have found that ketamine can do something no other drug can: it often relieves even suicidal depression in a matter of hours in patients who have not responded to other treatments.
Major Depressive Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, and Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are among the most painful experiences a human being can endure – so painful, in fact, that each year over one million people choose suicide rather than suffering one more day with these conditions. The general public often thinks wrongly of these conditions as purely emotional, but sufferers endure serious and debilitating physical symptoms that impede their ability to function normally, in addition to the emotional pain amplified by those symptoms. People with the very worst cases do not respond to standard treatments. For them, depression/bipolar/PTSD is often a life sentence or a death sentence but
Ketamine acts on a different neurotransmitter called glutamate. Low dose ketamine produces strong analgesia in neuropathic pain states, presumably by inhibition of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor. Ketamine works differently than commonly used antidepressants such as Prozac, Zoloft, and Effexor. Ketamine binds to, and thereby inhibits, a receptor in our brain cells called the NMDA receptor, which controls synaptic plasticity and memory function. Inhibition of the NMDA receptor causes anesthetic and antidepressant effects, which was observed when scientists used other compounds to block NMDA receptors as well. However, when researchers used ketamine, they saw that the other NMDA blocking compounds turned off the production of some proteins, but ketamine actually caused the neurons (brain cells) to increase the production of a protein called BDNF (brain derived neurotrophic factor). Also, another difference between ketamine and other NMDA inhibitors is that ketamine only blocks NMDA receptors that are not being used to send a specific signal. Many of these receptors are firing in the background of the brain, and scientists have found a link between mood disorders and this “background noise” that ketamine apparently “resets”.
Ketamine is one of only two anesthetics listed by the World Health Organization (WHO) as an “essential drug”. The WHO is a specialized agency of the United Nations concerned with international public health. Their essential drugs are “those drugs that satisfy the health care needs of the majority of the population; they should therefore be available at all times in adequate amounts and in appropriate dosage forms, at a price the community can afford”. WHO’s essential drugs are the basis for many countries’ national drugs policy.
Much of the early research conducted was based around a single infusion, which proposes two problems. The first one is that many of our patients don’t respond to treatment until after their 2nd infusion. The second problem is that results are generally reported to last an average of 7-10 days. This caused many critics to say, “it works, but it doesnt last”. Because of this, we pioneered a series of 6 infusions over 2-3 weeks, producing a more pronounced and much longer lasting benefit.
Receiving ketamine intravenously is the only method of administration that has been clinically proven to be effective and thus the only method currently used by Dr. Shakir Meghani of Alabama Ketamine Clinics of Dothan, Alabama. We have maximum control over your rate of infusion, with the ability to titrate up or down accordingly based on your level of comfort and improvement. If there are any undesired side effects, we have an IV established and can quickly push medicine to manage nausea or anxiety that begins working within 1 minute. If there are any adverse effects, we can stop the infusion immediately. Each infusion will be consistent, not necessarily experienced the same, but IV enables us to provide a crucial continuity of care. We will know exactly, down to the microgram, how much medicine you received. We can ensure you receive less or more at your next infusion depending on your response. The medicine is felt very quickly, usually within 5 minutes of establishing the IV, and dissipates very quickly, usually within 15-20 minutes of completion.
The clinical program at Alabama Clinics is one of few, if not the only clinic, which combines the diagnostic tools of mental health professionals with the precision of the anesthesia community. The combination of those two professions allows us to evaluate patients and determine how effective Ketamine treatment may be for you or your loved one.
We recognize Ketamine treatments are only part of a patient’s road to recovery and for a patient to truly be successful they will need to seek additional therapy and support in conjunction with improving their life skills through exercise, diet, and focus on wellness. Ketamine can restore your function, so you are finally able to pursue all those avenues of healing.
We at Alabama Clinics provide Ketamine treatments for a wide variety of mood disorders, depression and conditions including
We use Ketamine therapy to treat a wide variety of severe and chronic pain conditions including
We at Alabama Clinics provide Ketamine treatments for a wide variety of personality disorders including