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News Bluelight Research on Ketamine as a Treatment for Depression and PTSD

Bluelight Research on Ketamine as a Treatment for Depression and PTSD


Bluelight would like to congratulate Tharcila Chaves and her colleagues on their recent publication: The use of ketamine to cope with depression and post-traumatic stress disorder: A qualitative analysis of the discourses posted on a popular online forum. The paper was published in The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse.


The abstract is quoted below:

Background
Because of the shortcomings of traditional pharmacotherapy for major depressive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), there has been growing interest in the rapid mood-enhancing effect of ketamine.

Objectives
To analyze what has been posted about ketamine use for dealing with self-reported depression and/or PTSD on one of the biggest international message boards on the internet.

Methods
Qualitative study with online observation of threaded discussions on Bluelight. In-depth online searches were conducted in 2018. Twenty-nine threads, with a total of 708 units of analysis, were selected and subjected to content analysis, where, via a coding process, the units of analysis were organized into nodes.

Results
Despite having several negative effects (e.g. dizziness, nausea and inability to talk), the examined discourses suggested that the use of ketamine to elevate mood was both efficient and worthwhile. Intranasal use was the most common route of administration mentioned. We traced how the mood enhancement caused by ketamine is perceived: the loss of pleasure disappears, as well as the depressed mood; the markedly diminished interest in activities vanishes and motivation comes back. From all the posts analyzed, only two reported negative outcomes (i.e. no mood-enhancing effect). The most mentioned adverse event was damage to the urinary bladder and the kidneys in cases of misuse.

Conclusion
Although online research of user-generated content has its limitations in terms of reliability and validity, the present study adds relevant information on the use of ketamine for managing depression and PTSD, whether this use is done legally or not.



Annotated version of the final paragraph in the conclusion of the article is quoted below:

Ketamine appears to be a potential tool in managing depressive symptoms. The increasing popularity of ketamine clinics and the FDA approval of esketamine for TRD (treatment resistant depression) say a lot about the current status of off-label ketamine: it seems to work in several situations and people are already benefiting from it (not only people living with depression or PTSD; another popular off-label use of ketamine is for treating chronic pain). Ketamine has the potential to benefit a big group of patients who do not respond to the available therapies. It is considered by the World Health Organization an essential medicine and restricting it has harmed patients, with no reduction in recreational use. More scientific research is needed, naturally, but there is already a substantial amount of data suggesting that ketamine is effective and safe. “If they don’t bring us the treatment, we will make it ourselves”, a T1 member stated (Bluelight quote from thread no. 1). From the black market to the white coat, ketamine as a mood enhancer has been presenting positive results in handling depression and PTSD, giving a novel approach to the pathophysiology and therapy of these conditions.


I think we should be proud to have contributed to an article that advocated greater availability of ketamine as a medicine for depression and PTSD. :)


Note that the full-text article is behind a paywall, but if you have issues accessing and want the pdf, send an email to [email protected]
 

Comments

You should seriously investigate both 2-fluoro as well as deschloroketamine, and of course methoxetamine. It is so sad that these compounds will vanish into nirvana after stupid legislations ban them even when nothing really bad happens until somebody uses them absolutely recklessly and that's true with any compound. It's easier to kill yourself off OTC paracetamol than with a dissociative probably.

MXE afaik doesn't share the physical immobilization (I can't tell because I don't get it from K either) so one of the side effects, inability to speak, would fall off. Never got nausea either. Also all of them are lighter on the body and share the sustained antidepressant effect, to me personally they are much more effective but at least equally safe as K.

It's fucked up that we now have a S-Ket nasal spray approved for use against therapy resistant depression in Switzerland and they even start with around 50mg and increase it to a remarkable 84mg but it is strictly limited to application only under supervision, with vital signs monitored (when K is used exactly for the reason that this is not required and in much higher, anesthetic doses) and all. I wouldn't want to get my first dissociation in a hospital for sure and neither do I want to go twice a week into one.

But I'm glad to see K being approved at all, never imagined that this could ever happen a decade ago when I individually discovered the huge potential of dissociatives against depression and failed to convince doctors even after first evidence popped up and DXM entered clinical trials in combination with bupropion (another really fucked up thing, this combo is too heavily stimulating for me to tolerate it).

Mental addiction is a thing with dissociatives but docs could just give you one or two doses every week and very little people would consider giving their remedy away. After all we don't see SSRIs being sold often either for example.
 
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