Skip to main content

My experience with ketamine infusions for chronic pain

I recently underwent ketamine infusion for chronic pain. I thought I would share my experience for those who are considering this procedure to manage their symptoms of chronic pain and fibromyalgia.

There is plenty of information about ketamine infusions on the web. For those who are new to this, here is a link that may be beneficial.

Personally, I was motivated by this blog post. Unfortunately, the ketamine infusion did not help me but at the same time, I must state that I did only to sessions and the doctor discontinued because he thought that it would not help. I'm still hopeful that may be it may help if the doctor agrees to continue the entire course of 4 to 6 sessions.

The infusions were done for me as an outpatient procedure. This meant that every day I had to be at the hospital at 9 AM to complete the paperwork and all formalities. The breakfast had to be light. The procedure actually started around 10 AM and lasted for about 4 hours. After that, there was one hour of rest and observation. Which means that I had a late lunch at about 4 PM after returning home. The main point to note here is that one should plan for about 6 hours of having no meals. Also considering that the breakfast had to be light, you should probably consider almost half a day of having minimal meals.




The procedure essentially involves intravenous infusion. Since it was an outpatient procedure for me, every day I was given an IV at a new place on the hand. So with 6 sessions, the hand can get pretty painful. I was later told that the infusion can also be given via the feet. Fortunately, I had one day between the sessions so there was some time for the hand to heal.

The rest of the procedure is painless. The doctor said that I may experience hallucination or vomiting but I did not have either of these symptoms. I also did not sleep through the procedure as is mentioned at some sites on the Internet. I felt as if I was in a slow motion movie. I could hear people speaking around me but it was as if they were speaking very slowly in a drawl. My vision was affected and I could only make out the outline of the hospital personnel around me. Some of the minor pain that I was experiencing earlier disappeared but the main abdominal pain continued. It did reduce a little bit. Most of the time I felt I was if I was floating. When the doctor pressed on the abdominal pain site, I experience quite a bit of pain. The doctor was surprised because he said that most people do not experience any pain during the procedure. That was part of the reason why he said ketamine infusion will not be useful for me. For the record, the dosage of ketamine was 20 mL per hour and I was given 60 mL the first day and 80 mL the next.

But with the lack of options and the growing list of success stories from patients, I'm discussing with the Dr of having a go at it again.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me or leave a comment in the comments section below.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Strengthening Exercises While Being Bedridden

If you are frequently bedridden due to illnesses like chronic pain, chances are that you will tend to lose muscle mass. Less muscle strength can lead to increase pain thus causing a vicious cycle of chronic pain. It is important therefore to find a way to exercise and strengthen the muscle despite being bedridden.

Over the years, I have found myself frequently to be in this situation due to fibromyalgia.  There are several videos about exercises for the bedridden patients(for example, this). However, the exercises in these are more to improve mobility rather than increase muscle strength. Ultimately, I spent quite a bit of time compiling a list of exercises from YouTube that exercise and strengthen every major muscle group.  The list is provided below along with the major muscle groups that they exercise.As I have suffered from injuries because of using weights incorrectly, I recommend trying only with the resistance bands initially and that is what I have included in the list.
(The …

3 Quick Tips on Disability Insurance for The Impatient (And for Those Who Don't Care!)

I know your time is important. So let's get right to the main points first and save the details for later.
Here is what you need to know about disability insurance in the US.

Disability Happens More Often Than You Think
According to the United States Census Bureau, nearly 1 in 5 people are disabled. This does not include invisible disabilities which are estimated to be 10%. And then there are temporary disabilities that can prevent you from working for several months to a few years at a time. With these figures, as a conservative estimate, there is a 33% chance that you will be requiring disability insurance at some point in your life
.
It Happens to Women More Often Than Men
According to the United States Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, 24.4% women report on disability as compared to 19.8% men.

Employer Paid Disability, More Often Than Not, Does Not Help in Times of Need 
Employer paid disability is governed by ERISA law. According to this article that appeared in the Lo…

How This Ayurvedic Herb Helped Me Safely Withdraw from Antidepressants

As a patient with chronic pain, I have to try out different painkillers and antidepressants to manage my pain. Most of these medications, especially the antidepressants, have side effects that include increased dependence and, therefore, can cause withdrawal symptoms. Depending on the duration and the dosage of the medication, these symptoms can range from a mere inconvenience to brutal and long-lasting health problems.

I myself faced tremendous difficulty while trying to wean myself off an antidepressant called amitriptyline. Like many of its counterparts, amitryptiline also has drowsiness as one of its side effects. Consequently, insomnia as a result of withdrawal from amitriptyline was a major problem for me. From a high of 75 mg, I was able to reduce the dosage to 25 mg at the rate of 5- 10  mg every fortnight without much trouble. However, reducing dosage from 25 mg onwards was a nightmare - no pun intended. I started experiencing disturbing vivid dreams that made it impossible …