Ketamine for Depression: Intranasal Vs. IV Infusion

No doubt ketamine is the most proven and effective treatment to treat depression. Many studies have shown the potential of intravenous ketamine in improving the symptoms of depression in about 70% of individuals.

While ketamine IV infusions have remarkably known as the ‘gold standard’ in terms of administration, latest studies also discovered some other administration routes including sublingual, intramuscular and intranasal.

Intramuscular Administration

This administration route has raised some concerns because the administration rate is not as precise as needed for comfort and safety. In this process, ketamine absorbs quite rapidly into patient’s bloodstream that its side-effects can be intense and unpleasant. In fact, once it is administered, there is no way you can take it back if the patient starts feeling overwhelmed by the experience.

Sublingual Ketamine

While initially effective and promising, this administration route has proven to be a more problematic method. In this administration route, it might not be impossible but it is quite difficult to control the rate of delivering sublingual ketamine to the brain. In fact, only 30% of the ketamine reaches the brain while the absorption into the patient’s bloodstream is quite slow.

Intranasal

It is the 2nd most reliable administration route after IV infusions. Some latest studies shed some light on problems associated with this method to treat depression. The method that, at first, seemed a simple way to administer the life-changing drug has come up with many red flags i.e. unpredictability on the basis of patient’s mucous levels, a variety of application techniques, and unexpected issues with tolerability, etc.

On the other hand, IV infusions provide 100% to the brain and also in a quite precise, controlled and calculable manner. Its side effects are mild and it results are instant and can be felt just after the first session.

However, the results of IV infusion also depend on the professional conducting the treatment. Thus always hire only the most reputed professionals to perform the procedure.