|“Recent data suggest that ketamine, …. might be the most important breakthrough in antidepressant treatment in decades. Three findings are worth noting. First and most important, several studies demonstrate that ketamine reduces depression within six hours, with effects that are equal to or greater than the effects of six weeks of treatment with other antidepressant medications. The shift from six weeks to six hours has already transformed what we could and should expect of antidepressant treatments. Second, ketamine’s effects have been noted in people with treatment-resistant depression. Most of the studies to date have tested ketamine in people for whom other treatments were not effective, including both medications and psychotherapy. This promises a new option for people with some of the most disabling and chronic forms of depression, whether classified as major depressive disorder or bipolar depression.”
- Thomas Insel, Previous Director of the National Institute for Mental Health
Is Ketamine Right For Me?
If there was a safe alternative to antidepressants to treat your depression and PTSD and it provided lasting results, wouldn't you want to feel better, sooner? If you have been receiving therapy and perhaps made only modest improvements, or you have tried medications, but don't feel that you want to be on a medication long term, or perhaps you want something will help you feel better for longer, then Ketamine treatments may be your solution. Ultimately the prescriber will determine if you are physically suited to Ketamine treatments, so it is well worth setting up an appointment with one of our psych ARNPs to learn how it may help you reach your goals sooner than with counseling alone.
Ketamine Treatments For Symptoms Of Depression and PTSD
Ketamine is a safe, effective medicine that has been found to significantly improve symptoms of depression. It is one of a series of newly rediscovered medicines that are found to promote neuroplasticity in the brain, and therefore appear to assist in the resolution of depressive symptoms. Research into the use of Ketamine for other disorders such as OCD, Eating Disorders and Anxiety are ongoing. This is an exciting field, with a growing body of research suggesting that experiencing even a brief altered state of consciousness can produce profound and significant healing.
Often Ketamine is simply administered in a medical setting, and then no follow up or psychological assistance is offered. It is typically treated as more like a vitamin infusion, yet the research shows that partnered with psychotherapeutic integration, symptoms are relieved for almost twice the duration. We at King Health see the integral value of offering safe, effective psychotherapeutic integration with your ketamine treatment to give you the most long-lasting results. Our therapists are specially trained to provide this service just after your Ketamine infusion.
In the emerging realm of psychedelic psychotherapy, currently, ketamine is the only legally available psychedelic medicine, and the profound insights that these medicines produce are thought to be the reason they produce such effective results. This insight is thought to be how the symptoms of depression lessen so quickly. Current theories suggest that Ketamine (and other psychedelic medicines) are found to promote the neuroplasticity of our brain structure, and as a result can lead to the resolution of painful symptoms.
How do I start Ketamine Treatment?
You will meet with one of our Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners for a thorough 90-minute medical psychiatric evaluation with one of our providers to rule out any condition that would prevent the use of Ketamine for your symptoms such as untreated heart disease or high blood pressure. They will go over your medical and emotional history with you and make sure you are a good candidate for a Ketamine infusion series.
After this meeting, you will consult with our RN, who will answer any questions you have about Ketamine. They will go over what to expect during your infusions and will schedule your series of 6 infusions over 3 week time period. You will also be scheduled for your psychotherapy sessions post-infusion if you wish to take advantage of our unique offering of Integration work to help deepen and promote long-lasting healing.
If you are choosing to participate in integration therapy, then you will schedule your first 60-minute appointment with your Integration therapist, who will meet with you through teletherapy to help you discover your intentions, to set a framework, and to help you lay the foundation for the most effective healing process.
Then you will arrive (a driver will need to bring you) at our clinic in-person for your first appointment in the series of six Ketamine injections. You will relax in a private room, in a comfortable and cushy recliner, while listening to therapeutically-tailored music for 60 minutes as our Registered Nurse monitors you. Then, if you have chosen to have Integration Therapy Treatment, you will move into a therapy office to have a safe, teletherapy session with your Integration therapist who will guide you in integrating your experience.
Your driver will pick you up 2 hours after dropping you off at our clinic. We will then see you again in two days over a period of three weeks for your first series.
Most clients report that they feel the effects of Ketamine treatments for 6-12 months, and sometimes require a “booster” session during that time. The timing depends on how long your symptoms are abated.
What does it cost?
Ketamine sessions themselves are not covered by insurance, but your evaluation and psychotherapy may be.
Ketamine Series Includes:
- 90-minute Psychiatric Evaluation (Possible Insurance coverage)
- 60-minute Orientation/Info Session with RN (Possible Insurance coverage)
- 6 sessions Ketamine over 3 weeks (Not covered by Insurance)
- Optional: 7 Therapy Sessions (Possible Insurance coverage)
- $400 a session for $2400 total
|Ketamine||Psychotherapy & Medication|
|6 sessions||52 sessions|
It is important to understand the value of Ketamine, as compared to regular psychotherapy and medication costs:
The average annual treatment cost for a patient with antidepressants and weekly psychotherapy sessions with a standard copay for medication and also for weekly therapy sessions is approximately $3100 a year. This number reflects an ideal scenario where your therapist and medication are both covered by your insurance plan without a deductible to meet. In fact, you might be interested to note that the average commercial insurance company budgets $15,000 for your treatment costs over a course of 4 years for each person diagnosed with depression due to the related negative health impacts that depression and mental health diagnoses cause.
What will I experience?
Some patients report a sense of floating above themselves, and some describe feeling a sense of “oneness” with the Universe and a strong sense of peace. The sensations can be described as “strange” but are quite distinct from the experiences of hallucinations from psychedelic medicines such as psilocybin or LSD. Patients report not feeling overwhelmed by these sensations when they are properly educated and prepared at their intake and information session. It will be our job to be your guide and to help you know and prepare for what to expect. Our RN will provide you with a list of side effects and help you understand the processes that you will be experiencing.
How do I get to access this treatment?
Currently, because safe Ketamine treatment is an in-clinic treatment, clients need to be able to travel to one of our clinics. We expect treatment to be limited to Whatcom, Skagit, Snohomish, and King counties, but we are able to treat anyone within Washington state providing they are willing and able to travel to us.
If you are interested in this treatment then please fill out the following brief inquiry form and you will be contacted when we have appointment availability.
We are here for you.