Ketamine is one of several psychedelics that help promote structural and functional neuroplasticity in the Pre Frontal Cortex. Ketamine acts as an antagonist for the NDMA receptors in the brain as well, and is believed to activate AMPA, and also mTOR signaling pathways.
Low dose Ketamine Assisted Therapy in a 6-8 dose treatment regimen over 2-3 weeks has shown effective in reducing depression and other mental health issues. In low doses, Ketamine can induce an empathogenic state to promote oneness, and feelings of acceptance and connectedness.
The Empathogenic experience of ketamine can characterize the following experiences
"• The awareness of the body remains well preserved
• The body feels very comfortable and relaxed
• The ego functioning is well maintained; however, the ego defenses are significantly lessened
• The person experiences feelings of empathy and compassion for themselves • The mind feels emotional warmth, well-being, and joy • Strong feelings of love and peace are prevailing • Feelings of euphoria, pleasure and joy are common • Feelings of ecstasy and enhanced sensuality are frequent • The mind is dreamy with frequent non-specific colorful visual effects • The person may feel they have forgiveness and understanding of themselves and for those with whom they have important relationships.." (Kolp, Friedman, et al. 2014)
Although KAP is safe and has a good rate of efficacy, there are some conditions that may not be a good match for KAP, or may require more consultation before approval could be considered.
Patients with uncontrolled hypertension or arrythmia, patients with a history of cardiac or liver disease, and end stage renal disease may not be appropriate. Patients with a diagnosis of Bipolar I, Borderline Personality Disorder, a history of psychosis, a history of difficult psychedelic experiences, and /or patients with Active Suicidality may also not be a good fit.
It is important to be open and transparent with HPT, and the medical prescriber when completing the initial psychological and medical evaluations. HPT will seek permission to gather information from your current treatment providers, if needed.