Traditionally, sufferers of post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD) have turned to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and psychiatric drugs to treat their symptoms. But new studies show that ketamine infusion therapy also offers those experiencing PTSD a path toward healing.
Deciding which treatment option is right for you will depend on things like the symptoms you experience and what treatments worked or didn’t work for you in the past. PTSD is known to be particularly difficult to treat, with 35%-50% of patients found to be resistant to established means of treatment like psychiatric drugs and therapy.
Ketamine for PTSD
The American Psychological Association recommends four treatment options for PTSD—cognitive behavioral therapy, cognitive processing therapy, cognitive therapy, and prolonged exposure—and some additional treatment may show success, along with medications that include sertraline, paroxetine, fluoxetine, and venlafaxine. However, some people who try these options still suffer from symptoms of PTSD.
Ketamine infusion therapy, which is used to treat a host of tricky conditions like chronic pain and drug-resistant mental illness, has shown that it, too, may be a valuable ally in the effort to treat PTSD. A recent study published in 2021 by the Journal of Psychiatry revealed that repeated use of ketamine infusions resulted in rapid and stable improvement for sufferers of PTSD for weeks after treatment. In addition to this, researchers at New York’s Mount Sinai hospital found that symptoms showed rapid reduction in a proof-of-concept trial. Tradition medication for PTSD can take weeks or months to work, and one-third of patients experience no relief.
A Powerful Combination
Since the 2021 study was released, researchers have further explored how a combination of CBT and ketamine infusions might help treat symptoms. A report from the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry studied the outcomes of four studies that paired CBT with ketamine therapy and found that this method of treatment may be highly effective. While the sample size was very small and the studies varied in degrees of quality, researchers are hopeful that this line of treatment will offer a new, more sustainable model for treating PTSD.
Studies like these show that symptoms related to PTSD might soon be a much easier to treat, with ketamine showing much promise. If ketamine infusion therapy sounds like a positive approach to treat your symptoms, book a consultation to learn more about this method.