The American Society of Anesthesiologists in conjunction with the American Academy of Pain medicine and the American Society of Regional Anesthesia recently released guidelines for using ketamine intravenously for managing acute pain. It was derived that ketamine can be used as intranasal formulation, as an aide to opioids as well as a standalone treatment.
Ketamine has seen an increasingly growing demand in outpatient and inpatient settings for its ability to treat severe post-traumatic stress disorder and depression. The main reason behind its increasing importance is its ability to rein in the risk for long-term opioid use and related complications like addiction after long-term exposure.
Opioid use must be reduced
The main aim of these guidelines is to provide an alternative to institutions, doctors and payers for pain management. The guidelines also define who should or should not get it. These guidelines explain that ketamine 1V must be used by patients with painful surgery and may be recommended for opioid tolerant and dependent patients with sickle cell anemia. The guidelines also suggest that ketamine may be used in patients of from sleep apnea to limit the opioid use.
According to Steven Cohen, guideline author and MD from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, ketamine is effective in lower doses and many patients use it for the lack of any other options. As per the guidelines, the scientific data support ketamine dose up to 0.35 mg/kg in case of sub-anesthetic intravenous bolus and up to 1 mg/kg per hour in case of infusions as adjuncts to opioids.
Moreover, it must be avoided in pregnant women and individuals with cardiovascular disease, psychosis and patients with increased intraocular and intracranial pressure. Also, evidence recommends that ketamine infusions must not be prescribed to individuals suffering from severe diseases. And even with individuals with moderate diseases, it must be used with caution while keeping tab on liver function tests during and before infusion.
Ketamine: Effective, inexpensive and powerful
The guidelines also stated that intranasal ketamine is therapeutically efficacious for acute pain. It can also be given for procedural sedation and amnesia, but must also be considered for patients in whom access to intravenous is difficult and children who are undergoing operative procedures. Furthermore, there is less evidence with regards to oral ketamine, although reports and studies state that it can offer short-term benefits.
Additionally, there is little evidence which claimed that IV ketamine pain management was the only pain-reliever for pre-procedural and acute pain. The authors concluded that although ketamine has some drawbacks, it is an inexpensive and powerful tool for healthcare professionals. They believe that its use will increase in institutions where patients with severe diseases are treated, and among those struggling with opioid epidemic.
Also, additional research is required to define selection standards for treating acute pain, preventing chronic pain, better understanding of long-term risk factors of ketamine, and to find the best treatment schedule and dosage to co-administer it with adjuvants and opioids.
Ketamine addiction is treatable
Ketamine addiction is serious issue, as it makes it quite difficult for a person to perform his/her daily activities and can lead to serious long-term health consequences. Ketamine addiction and its withdrawal can be easily managed with the consultation of a behavioral healthcare specialist.
Excessive use of ketamine can lead to addiction and tolerance. Other symptoms of ketamine addiction are difficulty in speaking, loss of coordination, fatigue, frequent drowsiness, insomnia and pain in the bladder.
If you or your loved one is struggling with ketamine addiction, seek immediate help from Sovereign Health, a leading name in mental health and addiction treatment. We offer comprehensive treatment for ketamine addiction for long-term relief. Call our 24/7 helpline number or chat online with an advisor to locate our best ketamine addiction treatment centers.