Research Overview of Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy
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“This is a game changer”
~ John Krystal, MD, chief psychiatrist at Yale Medicine, pioneer ketamine researcher
Ketamine: “the Anti-Medication” Medication
“With most medications, like valium, the anti-anxiety effect you get only lasts when it is in your system. When the valium goes away, you can get rebound anxiety. When you take ketamine, it triggers reactions in your cortex that enable brain connections to regrow. It’s the reaction to ketamine, not the presence of ketamine in the body that constitutes its effects”
~ John Krystal, MD, chief psychiatrist at Yale Medicine, pioneer ketamine researcher
History of Ketamine for Depression
In 2000, a Yale University group (Berman et al) reported the rapidly acting antidepressant effects of ketamine in patients with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) in the first double‐blinded, placebo‐controlled trial of ketamine for MDD. Previously, Krystal et al (1994) established dosage guidance in their seminal study on the use of Ketamine for depression. Later studies have replicated the robust antidepressant effect of ketamine and showed that ketamine significantly reduces suicidal ideation in patients with depression.
Murrough et al (2013) gave six ketamine infusions over a 12‐day period in treatment‐resistant MDD patients, and 70.8% of these patients were responders to ketamine. In 2016 Singh et al demonstrated that twice‐ and thrice‐a‐week infusions of ketamine maintained the antidepressant efficacy in treatment‐resistant MDD patients. Mandal (2019) showed significant improvement in depression, anxiety and severity of illness starting within one hour of the first of 6 ketamine administrations and lasting until the 1-month follow-up.
How Does Ketamine Work?
Studies from Yale research labs showed that the drug ketamine, which was widely used as anesthesia during surgeries, triggers glutamate production, which, in a complex, cascading series of events, prompts the brain to form new neural connections. This makes the brain more adaptable and able to create new pathways, and gives patients the opportunity to develop more positive thoughts and behaviors. This was an effect that had not been seen before, even with traditional antidepressants.
~ Jennifer Chen in Yale Medicine ketamine review article (2022)
70.8% of depressed patients were responders to ketamine
ketamine significantly reduces suicidal ideation in patients with depression
Experts say ketamine needs to be part of a comprehensive treatment plan for depression
“Patients will call me up and say they don’t want any other medication or psychotherapy, they just want ketamine, and I have to explain to them that it is very unlikely that a single dose, or even several doses of ketamine alone, will cure their depression … it (ketamine) may provide rapid benefits that can be sustained with comprehensive treatment plans … it (ketamine) appears to help facilitate the creation new neural pathways that can help them develop resiliency and protect against the return of the depression.”
~ Gerard Sanacora, MD, PhD, Yale Psychiatrist involved in many ketamine studies
At the Catalyst Center we offer Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy, a comprehensive ketamine treatment program designed to maximize the efficacy of this cutting edge treatment
Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP) combines the biochemical benefits of ketamine with evidence-based psychotherapy allowing you to maximize the positive impact of ketamine in your life. Initial research supports the promise of this approach to treatment.
Our findings suggest that KAP is an effective method for decreasing depression and anxiety in a private practice setting
~ Dore et al 2019
Change Begins Here
Contact Us to join the waitlist for our summer Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy Intensives
Selected Bibliography of Ketamine Research
Read our summary of Ketamine Vs Esketamine (Spravato)
Clinical Outcome Data for Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP)
Dore J, Turnipseed B, Dwyer S, Turnipseed A, Andries J, Ascani G, Monnette C, Huidekoper A, Strauss N, Wolfson P. Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP): Patient Demographics, Clinical Data and Outcomes in Three Large Practices Administering Ketamine with Psychotherapy. J Psychoactive Drugs. 2019 Apr-Jun;51(2):189-198. doi: 10.1080/02791072.2019.1587556. Epub 2019 Mar 27. PMID: 30917760. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30917760/
Overview of recent developments in ketamine for depression:
Chen, Jennifer (2022). How Ketamine Drug Helps with Depression. Yale Medicine. https://www.yalemedicine.org/news/ketamine-depression
Overview history of Ketamine research:
Hashimoto K. (2019). Rapid-acting antidepressant ketamine, its metabolites and other candidates: A historical overview and future perspective. Psychiatry and clinical neurosciences, 73(10), 613–627. https://doi.org/10.1111/pcn.12902
First RTC of Ketamine for Depression:
Berman, R. M., Cappiello, A., Anand, A., Oren, D. A., Heninger, G. R., Charney, D. S., & Krystal, J. H. (2000). Antidepressant effects of ketamine in depressed patients. Biological psychiatry, 47(4), 351–354. https://doi.org/10.1016/s0006-3223(99)00230-9
Seminal Study establishing 0.5 mg/kg as base dose
Krystal, J. H., Karper, L. P., Seibyl, J. P., Freeman, G. K., Delaney, R., Bremner, J. D., Heninger, G. R., Bowers, M. B., Jr, & Charney, D. S. (1994). Subanesthetic effects of the noncompetitive NMDA antagonist, ketamine, in humans. Psychotomimetic, perceptual, cognitive, and neuroendocrine responses. Archives of general psychiatry, 51(3), 199–214. https://doi.org/10.1001/archpsyc.1994.03950030035004
Study showing 70.8% of TRD responded to 6 ketamine sessions over 12 days:
Murrough, J. W., Perez, A. M., Pillemer, S., Stern, J., Parides, M. K., aan het Rot, M., Collins, K. A., Mathew, S. J., Charney, D. S., & Iosifescu, D. V. (2013). Rapid and longer-term antidepressant effects of repeated ketamine infusions in treatment-resistant major depression. Biological psychiatry, 74(4), 250–256. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsych.2012.06.022
Study showing twice and three times per week administrations maintained efficacy with major depressive disorder:
Singh, J. B., Fedgchin, M., Daly, E. J., De Boer, P., Cooper, K., Lim, P., Pinter, C., Murrough, J. W., Sanacora, G., Shelton, R. C., Kurian, B., Winokur, A., Fava, M., Manji, H., Drevets, W. C., & Van Nueten, L. (2016). A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled, Dose-Frequency Study of Intravenous Ketamine in Patients With Treatment-Resistant Depression. The American journal of psychiatry, 173(8), 816–826. https://doi.org/10.1176/appi.ajp.2016.16010037
Efficacy of ketamine persists at 1 month follow up:
Mandal, S., Sinha, V. K., & Goyal, N. (2019). Efficacy of ketamine therapy in the treatment of depression. Indian journal of psychiatry, 61(5), 480–485. https://doi.org/10.4103/psychiatry.IndianJPsychiatry_484_18
Begin Your Journey
If you are interested in learning more about The Catalyst Center Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy program, or to join our waitlist for the next available KAP intensive, fill out the form below or give us a call at 720-675-7123
Meet Our Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy Team
Adrienne is a board-certified, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP). She provides Medication Management. She is an integral part of our KAP team. Because our ketamine treatment model begins with a comprehensive medical evaluation, Adrienne is often the first person on our KAP team you will meet with. In addition to being the medical provider who is present during each treatment, many clients also prefer her to be their guide and integration therapist.
Sarah sees her role as walking alongside her clients on the journey towards greater health, meeting you where you are now and helping you take the next step in your journey when you are ready.
As a trauma specialist and an integral part of The Catalyst Center’s Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP) team, Allison is dedicated to evidence-based practices and emerging research in the world of psychedelic medicines. Having witnessed profound shifts in thinking and symptom relief in her clients, she believes in the healing potential of KAP.
Kendra Doukas is passionate about her work helping individuals struggling with long-standing depression and anxiety, especially when these issues stem from past trauma using KAP. I have been excited to see the effects KAP can have and have watched clients be able to unburden things they have been carrying for a long time.
If you are ready to make a change and give yourself the gift of healing, Karmen may be a great fit for you. She is easy to connect with, deeply compassionate, and has the training and knowledge needed to help you reach your goals.
Dr. Joey Tadie is a talented psychologist enthusiastic about the healing opportunities psychedelic-assisted therapy brings for clients facing chronic depression, anxiety, and PTSD. These problems are often painful, disruptive, and even demoralizing for clients who have endured them for years. He is excited to offer KAP to clients looking to change these negative patterns and find a new direction.
Dr. Erin Jacklin is the owner and clinical director of The Catalyst Center. She will admit that she was wary of using psychedelics in therapy. However, her drive to bring our clients the best and most effective therapeutic tools has resulted in training and providing KAP. She is excited to share her research and expertise.
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