Ketamine Infusions for Chronic Pain: How Does It Work?

Oct 10, 2023
Ketamine Infusions for Chronic Pain: How Does It Work?
Ketamine may be the solution you’re looking for to manage pain that lasts three months or longer. If medications aren’t working for you anymore, consider the benefits of minimally invasive ketamine fusion therapy.

Ketamine infusion therapy is an effective treatment option for people with chronic pain that’s not treatable with traditional methods. If you haven’t found lasting pain relief with prescription medications but aren’t ready for surgery, it’s time to explore the benefits of ketamine.

At Zephyr Medical, we offer ketamine therapy for adults with chronic pain. Our pain management specialist Asher C. Goldstein, MD, provides medically supervised infusions to help you find long-term pain relief from chronic conditions like fibromyalgia, neuropathy, and cancer.

Dr. Goldstein provides comprehensive health evaluations to determine if you’re a candidate for ketamine therapy. He prioritizes your health and safety during each infusion session to ensure the best possible outcome.

What to know about ketamine

Ketamine is generally used as a surgical anesthetic. In lower doses, ketamine offers pain-relieving benefits for people who don’t respond to oral or injectable medications.

While medical researchers are still exploring how ketamine controls pain, they believe the drug provides pain-relieving benefits by blocking N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors in your brain that transmit pain signals.

Infusions of ketamine can prevent the overstimulation of your nerve cells, so your pain feels less severe. Ketamine also prevents neurotransmitters like glutamate from activating NMDA receptors to prevent frequent pain.

Pain conditions that ketamine infusions can treat

Ketamine infusion therapy effectively manages neuropathic pain resulting from nerve damage. You may also be a candidate for ketamine infusion therapy if you have conditions like:

Because ketamine isn’t the first line of treatment for these conditions, our pain management team may initially recommend oral medications, steroid injections, physical therapy, and other strategies to ease chronic pain.

They monitor your response to treatment, and if your pain continues, they can review your health history to determine if you’re a candidate for ketamine infusions.

What to expect during ketamine infusion therapy

Ketamine therapy involves infusions through an intravenous (IV) line in your vein. The medication slowly drips into your bloodstream, and the treatment usually lasts about an hour.

Dr. Goldstein and our team carefully supervise your treatment and monitor your vital signs during the infusion. We provide a comfortable space for you to relax during your appointment. When your treatment is over, we remove the IV line and monitor you for any side effects. You also receive midazolam, a sedative medication that prevents hallucinations and other adverse reactions to ketamine.

Some people notice a decrease in their pain before their infusion ends. However, it can take several hours or days to experience the full benefit of ketamine. We may recommend additional infusions based on your condition and overall health if ketamine provides sufficient pain relief.

If you’re not a candidate for ketamine therapy, we continue to work with you on a treatment plan to bring your pain under control so you can enjoy a high-quality, physically active life.

Call Zephyr Medical in Brooklyn, New York, to find out if you’re a candidate for ketamine infusion therapy, or book an appointment online today.