Ketamine Treatment for Chronic Pain in Southern California

Everyone feels pain occasionally, whether from a pulled muscle or a finger cut. Pain can serve as an important indication that something is wrong, and it can prevent us from incurring further injury. But what happens when pain is prolonged by weeks, months, or even years? Chronic pain is long-term, life-altering and unfortunately, highly prevalent in the United States.

Chronic pain can affect one’s ability to participate in day-to-day activities, and can take a toll on one’s mental health. Chronic pain can cause depression, anxiety and irritability. Although chronic pain is not always curable, there are treatments that can help.

At Neuro Wellness Spa, we offer intravenous (IV) ketamine therapy as a treatment option for those suffering with chronic pain.

What is Ketamine IV Therapy?

Millions of people suffer from chronic and debilitating physical and psychiatric disorders, including anxiety and depression. However, many of these conditions may stop responding to medications, like anti-depressants, and other therapies. IV ketamine therapy is a safe and effective treatment option for people who suffer from treatment-resistant:

 

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Acute suicidality
  • PTSD
  • Chronic pain

 

Physicians have used Ketamine for over 50 years as an anesthetic. However, new research indicates its effectiveness in other applications too.

Researchers at Mass General Hospital conducted the largest study of IV ketamine therapy. They found that over 70% of patients suffering from treatment-resistant depression experienced symptom relief with IV ketamine therapy. This study, along with a growing number of others, is a major finding that demonstrates the effectiveness of IV ketamine for those who have tried standard treatments but haven’t responded adequately.

What is Ketamine IV Therapy?

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Millions of people suffer from chronic and debilitating physical and psychiatric disorders, including anxiety and depression. However, many of these conditions may stop responding to medications, like anti-depressants, and other therapies. IV ketamine therapy is a safe and effective treatment option for people who suffer from treatment-resistant:

 

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Acute suicidality
  • PTSD
  • Chronic pain

 

Physicians have used Ketamine for over 50 years as an anesthetic. However, new research indicates its effectiveness in other applications too.

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Researchers at Mass General Hospital conducted the largest study of IV ketamine therapy. They found that over 70% of patients suffering from treatment-resistant depression experienced symptom relief with IV ketamine therapy. This study, along with a growing number of others, is a major finding that demonstrates the effectiveness of IV ketamine for those who have tried standard treatments but haven’t responded adequately.

How Is Chronic Pain Treated with Ketamine IV Therapy?

IV ketamine is an anesthetic that stimulates neuron growth within the brain. Ketamine has been used in medicine since the early 1960s, when it was synthesized as a safer alternative to other anesthetics. However, there is new evidence that suggests ketamine by activating and inhibiting areas of the brain to relieve chronic pain. Today, IV ketamine has been shown to be a safe and effective treatment option for those with treatment-resistant:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Spinal Injury
  • Phantom limb pain after amputation
  • Neuralgia
  • Chronic Pain 

Traditionally, chronic pain may be treated based on a trial and error approach with:

 

  • Antidepressants
  • Anti-seizure medications
  • Narcotic pain medications
  • Topical creams

 

If medications and nonpharmacological interventions do not provide pain relief, IV ketamine therapy may be a treatment option. IV ketamine is known for its ability to help relieve medication-resistant chronic pain syndromes, especially those syndromes that have a neuropathic component, such as complex regional pain syndrome type 1 (CRPS-1), post-herpetic neuralgia and neuropathic pain from peripheral nerve damage.

So how does the ketamine therapy work for chronic pain?

The dosage is decided based on the patient’s body weight (0.5mg/kg). The drug is administered at a slow and controlled pace to the patient by a trained clinician. IV Ketamine doesn’t have any long-lasting associated side effects. Although some people may experience sensitivity to light and/or sound and disorientation while the treatment is administered, these feelings subside quickly when the treatment is finished.

IV Ketamine can cause feelings of dissociation while the treatment is being administered. However, many patients report that these feelings of dissociation can help them develop an objective perspective about past experiences.

Ketamine has been shown to effectively and safely treat mood and chronic pain disorders by inhibiting N-Methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors. When the NMDA receptor is blocked, ketamine brings acute and chronic pain relief. Some researchers indicate that ketamine does this by resetting the hyper-sensitized pain receptors in the nervous system. 

 

What Is Chronic Pain? 

Chronic pain is a very common condition that over 3 million people suffer from every year. This is a persistent sensation that occurs within the nervous system. It is caused by: 

  • Inflammation
  • Injuries
  • Nervous system dysfunction
  • Autoimmune disorders 

 

For pain to be considered “chronic” it must last for more than 12 weeks. 

Pain, whether it is acute or chronic, occurs when nerves fire signals of pain, hurt, or injury to the brain. These messages travel in the form of electrical signals from nerve to nerve until they reach the brain. When these signals stop, the pain should stop too. However, with chronic pain, the nerve signals continue to fire even after the body has healed. 

 

What Causes Chronic Pain? 

Usually, chronic pain begins after an injury or health condition. Leading causes of chronic pain include: 

  • Previous surgeries 
  • Migraines
  • Back problems 
  • Arthritis or Fibromyalgia 
  • Damaged nerves 
  • Infections 

 

Chronic pain cannot be fully cured, but it can be treated. Symptoms vary from person to person and can range from mild to severe. Chronic pain can be experienced anywhere on the body, but commonly affects the back and joints.

The symptoms of chronic pain may include: 

  • Aches
  • Burning sensations
  • Throbbing signals
  • Soreness
  • Stiffness

With chronic pain, it is also possible to experience migraines or intense headaches. 

Three major professional organizations, the American Society of Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine, the American Society of Anesthesiologists, and the American Academy of Pain Medicine, have all concluded that ketamine infusions for chronic pain can be an effective treatment option. 

It is important to note that ketamine should always be prescribed and administered by a doctor. At Neuro Wellness Spa, we are happy to discuss whether you or a loved one may be a candidate for IV ketamine. Feel free to contact us to learn more. 

 

Chronic Pain Statistics 

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that in 2016, 20.4% of adults living in the United States suffered from chronic pain. Chronic pain can be life-altering. Its sufferers are more likely to have depression, anxiety and reduced quality of life.

How Does Ketamine Therapy for Chronic Pain Feel?

At Neuro Wellness Spa, we administer low levels of ketamine in a controlled environment.

 

Ketamine can be used an anesthetic during surgery. However, the dosage we use during therapy is much lower. Patients do not lose consciousness or experience hallucinations during their sessions.

 

At such a low dosage, ketamine’s side effects will be very mild. When the drug is abused, individuals could experience a “trip” and hallucinate. However, at Neuro Wellness Spa we use FDA-approved doses and closely monitor our patients to make sure they are comfortable and relaxed.

What can I Expect During IV Ketamine Treatment for Chronic Pain?

When you are first admitted into a ketamine treatment center,

A physician will begin by reviewing your medical records and consulting with you about your depression. There will also be a physical examination.

A person should be in good health to receive a Ketamine infusion.

However, there are almost no conditions which would prevent a person from being able to receive the treatments. If a patient has high blood pressure or a heart condition, this may need to be rectified before treatment can proceed.

Patients will be asked some important questions.

Such as height, weight, age, medical history and more as part of your treatment assessment. This information helps the physicians and medical staff to prepare your treatment plan. It is important to disclose all information that is requested to ensure a smooth treatment administration.

Ketamine infusions are typically administered on an outpatient basis.

The medication is administered through an IV, and the session lasts between 40-50 minutes.

The environment you encounter during your treatment can have a large impact on your experience of the infusion.

Although it does not affect the treatment outcome, some patients do struggle with anxiety or fright as the drug takes effect. Your physician may lower the lights or take other measures to make the setting more comfortable. You might also choose some relaxing music to help you through the onset phase.

The medication will then be administered through an IV.

Usually inserted into the arm, wrist, or hand. Little pain is involved because the needle is injected very near the surface of the skin. As the ketamine is delivered at the correct dosage, your blood pressure, pulse, and oxygen saturation are all monitored.

You will feel the effects of the ketamine very quickly.

Although you remain aware of the immediate surroundings, you will be unable to do basic things like stand up or hold a normal conversation.

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During the first treatment and perhaps subsequent treatments, patients may experience dizziness, nausea, confusion, loss of appetite, sleeping problems, and even fatigue.

It can be difficult to stand or sit up during or after treatment. If you are receiving outpatient infusion therapy, it is important to have someone accompany you to transport you home after your treatment. A complete list of possible side effects will be provided to you prior to your treatment session. If you experience any side effects, let your doctor know right away.

You may also improve your infusion experience by cultivating the right mindset and emotional state before entering treatment.

Although the side effects are not severe, there is no harm in eliminating as many as you can. Learning how the treatment works can go a long way toward overcoming any anxieties you might have. Also, trust that you have chosen a physician with the training and experience to guide you safely through the process. On a final note, be aware that neither the sensation of treatment nor your mental state during the process meaningfully impacts the therapeutic outcome of the treatment. Research suggests that the depression and anxiety relief arise from long-term physical and chemical changes that take place in the brain in response to the ketamine—not the experience or sensation. This means you will still benefit even if you have some apprehension about the process.

Contact Neuro Wellness Spa

Neuro Wellness Spa is a leading IV ketamine therapy provider in Southern California. We take pride in relieving symptoms of chronic pain, and helping our patients get their lives back.

For more information or to schedule a consultation, give us a call today at 1-877-847-3984. We are available 7 days a week. 

Have unanswered questions or wish to request a consultation?

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1-877-847-3984