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Pharmacological Treatments for Patients with Treatment-Resistant Depression

Safety of Repeated Administration of Parenteral Ketamine for Depression

Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego, CA 92037, USA
Kadima Neuropsychiatry Institute, San Diego, CA 92037, USA
Department of Clinical Pharmacy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA
Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Pharmaceuticals 2020, 13(7), 151;
Received: 4 June 2020 / Revised: 1 July 2020 / Accepted: 9 July 2020 / Published: 13 July 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antidepressants: Mechanistic Insights and Future Directions)
The objective of this study was to investigate the safety of repeated parenteral ketamine for depression. An electronic survey inquiring about the frequency of adverse events was distributed to providers of parenteral ketamine for depression. In addition, the investigators conducted a search of published studies describing six or more repeated parenteral ketamine treatments administered to individuals for depression, and extracted reported adverse events. The survey was sent to 69 providers, of which 36 responded (52% response rate); after eliminating those that were incomplete, 27 were included in the analysis. The providers in the analysis collectively reported treating 6630 patients with parenteral ketamine for depression, one-third of whom received more than 10 treatments. Only 0.7% of patients experienced an adverse effect that required discontinuation of ketamine. Psychological distress during the treatment was the most frequent cause. Other adverse events were extremely rare (such as bladder dysfunction (0.1%), cognitive decline (0.03%) and psychotic symptoms (0.03%)). Among the 20 published reports of repeated parenteral ketamine treatments, rates of significant adverse events resulting in discontinuation were low (1.2%). The rate of adverse effects reported in the survey and the published literature is low, and suggests that long-term treatment of depression with ketamine is reasonably safe. View Full-Text
Keywords: ketamine; major depressive disorder; depression; addiction ketamine; major depressive disorder; depression; addiction
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MDPI and ACS Style

Feifel, D.; Dadiomov, D.; C. Lee, K. Safety of Repeated Administration of Parenteral Ketamine for Depression. Pharmaceuticals 2020, 13, 151.

AMA Style

Feifel D, Dadiomov D, C. Lee K. Safety of Repeated Administration of Parenteral Ketamine for Depression. Pharmaceuticals. 2020; 13(7):151.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Feifel, David, David Dadiomov, and Kelly C. Lee. 2020. "Safety of Repeated Administration of Parenteral Ketamine for Depression" Pharmaceuticals 13, no. 7: 151.

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