Did you know that about twenty-one million adults suffered at least one major depressive episode in 2020?
On top of that, about nine million U.S. adults are diagnosed with depression each year, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
And still, even after seeking help, almost three million of those adults do not respond to traditional antidepressant therapies.
In turn, these patients have been forced to turn to newer treatment options such as psychoactive drugs– in particular, ketamine.
Ketamine’s antidepressant effects were first studied and reported about two decades ago. And since then, intravenous ketamine treatments have gone from being offered at just academic medical centers to specialized practices throughout the country.
The drug was shown to help relieve depressive symptoms in patients with treatment-resistant depression.
And when administered and monitored by medical professionals, ketamine did not trigger drug dependency.
Still, the viable treatment option has many other limitations in terms of access and longevity. First of all, ketamine infusions are typically expensive and cost patients out-of-pocket.
Second, there are usually long wait lists for ketamine infusions– so there are many treatment-resistant depression patients that might benefit from the drug but cannot access it.
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