Ketamine Drug Facts | A Center for Addiction Recovery

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Information provided below is courtesy of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

Ketamine Overview

Ketamine Addiction TreatmentKetamine is an anesthetic medication. Ketamine is used to put you to sleep for surgery and to prevent pain and discomfort during certain medical tests or procedures. Ketamine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide. This medication may impair your thinking or reactions. You will probably not be allowed to drive yourself home after your surgery or medical procedure. Avoid driving or operating machinery for at least 24 hours after you have received ketamine. Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity after you recover from anesthesia.Since this medication is given by a healthcare professional in a medical setting, an overdose is unlikely to occur. Your vital signs will be closely watched while you are under anesthesia to make sure the medication is not causing any harmful effects.

Ketamine Signs of Abuse

Signs that a person you know may be using ketamine include, but are not limited to:

  • Forgetting what he or she did or said recently
  • Short attention span, confusion
  • Mood swings 
  • Dizziness and fainting

Effects of Ketamine Abuse

Ketamine Abuse may lead to:

  • Flashbacks
  • Amnesia
  • Impaired motor functioning
  • Delirium (hallucinations or disorientation)
  • Dramatic increase in heart rate (tachycardia)
  • Loss of touch with reality (derealization)
  • Loss of coordination
  • Sense of invulnerability
  • Muscle rigidity
  • Aggressive/Violent behavior
  • Death from overdose - in severe instances

Ketamine Withdrawal Symptoms

Psychological addiction is the main concern when dealing with ketamine addiction or dependency. However, physical withdrawal symptoms like nausea, dizziness and diarrhea can happen when an individual immediately stops using ketamine; but deep rooted danger is the mental state of the user. Erratic unpredictable behavior, stress, and anxiety are some of the psychological withdrawal symptoms that may be experienced.

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