Repurposing Ketamine for Mental Illness




Jordan, Alaina
Justice, Payton
Seck, Ryann

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Anxiety, PTSD, and depression affect millions of people around the world, but often the treatments for these mental disorders are ineffective for many people. Progressive medicinal research has repurposed ketamine from an anesthetic to a psychotropic medication to help treat these mental disorders. Used with general anesthesia, ketamine is an FDA approved sedative for many major procedures, as it targets a different part of the brain than other anesthetics or narcotics. In conjunction with anxiolytics, ketamine uses slight psychodysleptic, hallucinogenic and dissociative properties to differentiate its effectiveness in treating mental disorders; without the use of anxiolytics, even a small dose of ketamine can cause intense hallucinogenic episodes, which in some patients, can worsen their PTSD, rather than help treat issues. Despite a few concerns, continuous research being done over the effects of ketamine show to have long lasting positive effects.