1. Getting Started
When you come to the Delaware Valley Wellness Center on your ketamine therapy infusion day, you will have your vital signs taken, have a final evaluation by one of our providers, sign a consent and have an IV (intravenous catheter) placed. All of our patients are treated with high safety and monitoring standards as necessary for basic infusion therapy.
We will take the time to answer any questions that you have.Once in the procedure room, you will relax in a reclining chair. Feel free to bring a blanket and/or your own headphones/earbuds and listening materials from home. We try to maintain a peaceful environment to allow our patients to focus on their thoughts and emotions. Most of our patients feel relaxed, and may even doze off as if one were sitting in a comfortable chair or couch at home. The infusion will start slowly and take about 45 minutes to complete.
3. Initial Experience
During the infusion, small increases in blood pressure and heart rate can occur. This is usually transient. Most of our patients normally feel some “effect” of the medication during the infusion. Every patient’s experience is different and can range from feeling like you are in a dream, or having a period of self-reflection. You can even feel a little lightheaded or woozy. Less commonly, some patients have mild nausea, numbness, and tingling or can become talkative, or even feel disconnected from their surroundings. Rarely, patients can experience some anxiety, sweating or headache. However, these feelings usually disappear within 30 minutes of stopping the infusion.
Expect to recover for about 30 minutes after the infusion. You must have a driver over the age of 18 to take you home. Patients usually begin to respond to the ketamine therapy within 1 to 2 treatments if it is going to be effective. Some patients unfortunately do not respond at all. It is theorized that 10 -15% of the population has a slightly different configuration of their NMDA receptors where one may not see a response to ketamine. Younger patients seem to respond better than the extreme elderly. If you are having positive results, we suggest having a total of 6 treatments mostly within a 3 week period. Booster infusions if needed, are given approximately every two to four months for maintenance therapy.
Patients should have nothing to eat or drink after midnight the night before their infusion (PLEASE READ!).
The Morning of the Infusion:
Patients should take their blood pressure medicine and other medications in the morning with a small sip of water.
Diabetics should adjust or hold their insulin after checking their blood sugar. If applicable, they should hold their oral diabetic pills accordingly.
Patients May Not have any solid food or cloudy unclear liquids (including Milk, cream and orange juice) for 8 hours prior to their procedure.
Patients are allowed to have small amounts of clear liquids (water, apple juice, black coffee or tea with sugar UP TO 4 hours prior to their procedure. However, nothing by mouth. (including candy, gum, mints, coffee, tea, milk, cream, juice, water etc,) WITHIN the 4 hours prior to their procedure. (The only exceptions are early morning medications with a small sip of water. Just enough to get them down, 2 hours prior).