FAQ

Ketamine is absolutely life-changing for many of our patients.  

But since each individual is different, we cannot guarantee that iv ketamine will or will not work for you.  Studies using IV ketamine consistently show a success rate of 70%, with some patients seeing improvement as soon as the first few hours, especially with suicidal thinking.  Our results are inline with these studies. (please link to the Our Results page.)

Most of our patients start feeling better within the first 1-3 treatments, but we do see rare delayed response, with improvement not seen until the full 6 treatments have completed.  

At Ketamine Milwaukee we work with you to create an individual treatment plan that maximizes your chance of success with your ketamine treatments.

We recommend an initial series of 6 treatments over the first few weeks to re-build and strengthen neuronal connections in the brain.  Studies show this initial series is important for achieving longer-lasting benefits with ketamine.  

After the initial series, most people come in for occasional single booster treatments, about once ever 4-6 weeks.

Since each patient is has a unique response and personal schedule, we are flexible with the timing of both the initial series and booster timing to fit your needs.  

Ketamine in not indicated if you have uncontrolled high blood pressure or intracranial high blood pressure or are allergic to the drug.  It is not indicated currently for active psychosis.  Long-term ketamine abusers have developed serious bladder problems.  This has never been reported in patients receiving low-dose iv ketamine for depression, but to be safe it should not be given to people with some pre-existing bladder issues like interstitial cystitis.

Yes.
You need to be in the care of a psychiatrist or qualified mental health professional (MHP) in order to have treatments at Ketamine Milwaukee.  To get the best results and the longest duration of relief from your infusions we strongly recommend continuing (or re-starting) therapy with your MHP as you undergo the ketamine therapy.  Often patients are able to more fully participate in therapy and lifestyle changes once ketamine treatments have started that were not possible before ketamine.  We communicate with your MHP throughout the treatments.  Milwaukee Ketamine will not provide ongoing psychiatric care, but we will followup with you related to the infusion therapy.  If you do not currently have a MHP we would be happy to refer you to someone qualified.

You will be taken to our treatment room and seated in a comfortable reclining chair.  We will ask you to fill out a brief questionnaire regarding your recent symptoms, then after a small iv is started and our anesthesia monitors are placed including an oxygen monitor, blood pressure cuff, and ekg.  The iv ketamine is given over 40 minutes during which time you may feel enhanced sensations such as bright colors or altered perceptions like a sense of disconnection from your body.   Many patients will say it was “weird” or ‘difficult to describe” but it is usually not unpleasant.  After the infusion is complete we will continue to monitor you for about 30 minutes.  By that time the side effects will have dissipated and you will be ready to go home with a driver.

Unfortunately, at this time insurance does not cover the cost of iv ketamine infusions.   We accept all major credit cards payable prior to each treatment.

Depression (unipolar and bipolar) that is not helped with two or more medications, as well as PTSD.  OCD and Post-partum depression can be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Ketamine is an incredible advance in the treatment of depression and PTSD.  It unleashes a cascade of events the result in normalizing connections in the brain that have been damaged by depression snd chronic stress.  

The effect is not a euphoria or stimulant effect, rather people find improvements in the areas of their lives affected by depression.  There is generally a rapid decrease in suicidal thoughts.  Patients feel lowered anxiety and better ability to handle stress.  People (or their loved ones) may notice they are able to get up in the morning, do things around the house, socialize, and return to hobbies and activities that previously brought pleasure.

However, ketamine is not a cure.  It is best as part of an overall mental health plan including therapy, medical management, exercise, and healthy habits.  

Ketamine is safe when given in a controlled environment by properly trained professionals.  While it has gotten a bad rap as a “date rape drug” or “horse tranquilizer,” those labels are there for shock value,  and don’t apply in our medical setting.  

Ketamine is a sedative that used in emergency rooms and operating rooms in special situations due to its excellent safety profile.  Ketamine generally preserves respiratory and cardiovascular function better than other sedatives currently in use.  However, increases in blood pressure are expected, and rare respiratory slowing can occur at high doses.  

We are one of the only clinics in the country to utilize continuous hemodynamic monitoring for our patients, insuring that any changes cardiovascular changes are noted and treated immediately.  

Long-term, medical Ketamine for mood disorders has very few side effects.  However, bladder and liver toxicity have been reported in long-term street Ketamine abusers.

At Ketamine Milwaukee we provide iv ketamine and do not generally prescribe IM, intranasal, oral, or sublingual ketamine at this time.

There are three reasons for this:
1.  Intravenous is the gold-standard for ketamine therapy with the vast majority of the studies over that past 10 years using the IV route.
2.  The IV route provides a predictable dose and absorption.  Absorption in oral and intranasal ketamine is a fraction of that obtained by IV administration and thus requires more ketamine to be given for a similar effect, often given on a daily basis.  We believe the higher dose and daily nature can put patients at risk for ketamine bladder toxicity.
3.  Diversion is a concern.  Ketamine is well known as a drug of abuse on the streets.

In short, we believe the IV route to be the most efficacious, with the least potential for harm.

If it gets approved by the FDA, we will likely begin to incorporate Esketamine nasal spray into our treatment plans at that time.

Interested in Ketamine Treatment?

Dr. Kane or an associate from Ketamine Milwaukee will get back with you to answer your questions and find out if ketamine therapy might be right for you.

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