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.


Popular posts from this blog

How US Tax Reform Affects Patients with Chronic Illness

It was messy, but it is finally done and over with! On December 22, 2017 the tax reform bill, or 'a giant tax cut ' as President Trump calls it, has finally been passed by both houses and has been signed into a law.

It is not immediately obvious how the tax plan impacts patients with chronic illnesses. Views in the media are often tainted by the political prism through which the commentators tend to look at this issue. Plus there is limited discussion of the specific provisions that can affect patients with chronic illnesses.

In this post, I am outlining some of the major provisions of the final bill that may affect chronically ill patients. Bear in mind that I am not a professional in accounting and taxation. However, I seem to have had more than my fair share of tax problems and as a result, I have become overfamiliar with the IRS website and publications.

Article continues after the ad
To make it easier to wrap our brains around this complex piece of legislation, I have div…

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 …

How I Healed My Shoulder Tendinitis

Shoulder Tendinitis is a common cause of shoulder pain. A more accurate term for it is Rotator Cuff Tendinitis. It means that one or more of tendons that make up the rotator cuff are inflamed. In my experience, even though this is not a serious injury, it is often debilitating and takes a long time to heal. I have had three recurring episodes of shoulder tendinitis in the last one year. I tried a variety of treatments but in the end, Kinesiology Tape along with frequent icing proved to be the most effective approach.
Article continues after the ad

Here is an account of my experience.
The initial symptoms
I developed shoulder tendinitis for the first time in my life due to shoulder pull ups. I was doing the pull ups as a part of a physiotherapy regimen to help me become functional after multiple years of disabling neck pain. Since I was also suffering from chronic abdominal pain, I was unable to lift any weights. So in order to rebuild the upper body strength, the physiotherapist suggest…