Treatment-resistant depression is a problem that needs effective and innovative solutions, one of which could be ketamine infusions. The highly skilled team of medical experts at Blackhawk TMS, in the Danville and Napa areas of California, can discuss the pros and cons of treatments for depression and are pleased to be offering a safe, noninvasive, and drug-free alternative called transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). Don’t give up on finding a way out of severe depression; call Blackhawk TMS today and find out how they can offer genuine relief from mental anguish, or book an appointment online.
Ketamine is probably best known as an anesthetic and painkiller, but it’s also an alternative treatment for depression in patients who aren’t improving with other approaches.
While many patients with depression do find that with trial and error they respond to one of the many types of antidepressant medication, combined with psychotherapy, many more fail to improve despite trying every possible medication and combination of drugs.
Ketamine is proving to be helpful for some depression patients and continues to undergo trials for FDA approval as a solution for treatment-resistant depression. A form of ketamine called esketamine was recently approved in nasal spray form, but IV ketamine is still off-label.
While ketamine shows promise as a treatment for depression, like all pharmaceuticals, it isn’t without risks and potential side effects. Noninvasive, nonpharmaceutical treatments such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) are highly effective for helping people who have treatment-resistant depression, and TMS also has FDA approval for this purpose.
Ketamine works in a different way to existing antidepressant medications, which affect neurotransmitters such as serotonin, noradrenaline, and dopamine. Although the precise chemical changes in the brain that result from ketamine infusion aren’t fully understood yet, researchers think that ketamine blocks NDMA receptors in the brain, preventing interaction with an amino acid neurotransmitter called glutamate.
The issue with using ketamine is that not enough is known about potential side effects. People have been using ketamine for many years as a recreational drug because it causes hallucinations, intense dreams, and out-of-body experiences, which would not be helpful for someone with a mental illness.
TMS, on the other hand, has none of these issues, as it is a totally drug-free treatment. TMS therapy is known to be effective in treating severe depression without any chance of adverse reactions, making it one of the safest options for people with treatment-resistant depression.
If you would like to find out more about transcranial magnetic stimulation and how it could benefit your mental health, call Blackhawk TMS today, or book an appointment online.