The last two years have been difficult for so many between continuous social isolation, loss of routine activities, loss of loved ones, and diminished access to routine medical care. Because of these unprecedented times, many are suffering from conditions that are more complex than the physical pain symptom they may initially present with – and at a much higher rate than I’ve seen before. It’s true that many people who suffer from chronic pain may have other conditions that are worsened by pain or conditions that can contribute to worse pain. Depression, anxiety, PTSD, insomnia, and other disorders are conditions that can affect chronic pain or be affected by changes in pain.
With this in mind, I’ve made more tools available to my patient community in order to provide the most well-rounded care possible, including alternative treatment options for patients who have pain problems that may also be affecting their mental health.
I’m happy to announce that I am now offering ketamine therapy, which has shown to be extremely effective in various types of pain conditions as well as some psychological disorders. Ketamine may help those suffering from either one or both by affecting pain generators, brain chemistry, and the nervous system. This is a treatment that may cooperate well with other therapies such as pain procedures, medications, counseling, and other interventions, and many patients are seeing results after just one treatment.
The FDA approves the use of ketamine for anesthesia purposes because it works well to sedate people and eliminates pain during a procedure. For a while now I have been using ketamine for conscious sedation during procedures, and I have witnessed how incredibly effective and safe this medication has been for my patients in this setting. However, at much lower doses, clinical research has shown this to be effective for much more than just sedation. Emerging data reveal profound benefits with ketamine therapy as part of a safe and effective therapeutic regimen for certain pain and mental health disorders in a controlled clinical setting. I find this both fascinating and promising and sought out more information. Last year, I completed formal training to implement ketamine therapy in my office, and since that time, I have joined an informal group of practitioners in Washington who are working to establish best practices for ketamine therapy.
Ketamine therapy may be right for those who have been chronically suffering, or for those suffering from newer symptoms with little to no relief with other traditional methods. I believe that in the right setting, ketamine can be a powerful and effective treatment alternative for those who have not had success with traditional means such as medication (including NSAIDs, opiates, anxiolytics, anti-depressants, and more), talk therapy, and other common interventions.
If you’ve tried a variety of treatments for pain, depression, or PTSD, but have had little success, ketamine therapy may be the solution you’re looking for. Click here to read more about ketamine therapy at Interventional Orthopedics of Washington, and give our office a call if you’d like to be evaluated for potential treatment.