It has been an exciting year for us. Opening the clinic in Ketchum has been a long time dream. Even if you have already had your free consultation, you can talk to us again. Maybe you've thought of more questions since your first consult. We understand! You can call Shanna directly at (208) 471-4757.
How does Ketamine Work?
Ketamine works by 4 different pathways. There are biological, functional, psychological, and transcendent mechanisms. Each mechanism is very important and we do our part to make sure that you have the best chance of success. Together we can do our best if we understand the intracies of the process:
Biological: Ketamine blocks activity of the neurotransmitter glutamate. Glutamate blocks the stimulation of NMDA receptors. This increases Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF), which increases neurogenesis and neuroplasticity. This can create a healthier state by restoring neuronal activity and strengthening the synapses in the prefrontal cortex.
The Default Mode Network (DMN) is a brain network which can become overactive with negative thoughts and ruminations. Some believe the ego resides here. Ketamine reduces DMN activity and gives the individual a chance to detach from the ego and experience their thoughts and emotions in a more objective way.
Psychological: Everyone has conscious and unconscious elements of their mind. The dissociative properties of Ketamine allow people to bring elements of the unconscious mind into their experience. Exploring the unconscious mind allows people the chance to process and integrate traumatic memories, emotions, and stories, which is a catalyst for healing. You can enter a new mind space with an entirely different and healing perspective.
In our clinic we regularly observe individuals healing through reconnection. Depression and associated pain can be a result of disconnection from spiritual elements in our lives. Ketamine helps some experience feelings of connection to the Devine, the Universe, or Source all around them.
Efficacy and Safety
When it comes to efficacy and safety IV Ketamine Infusion Therapy (IVKIT) is second to none.
The effects of ketamine are felt immediately when administered intravenously. With IVKIT you get 100% bioavailability. Typical pharmacologic therapies can take 6 to 8 weeks to work. Ketamine can work immediately.
Side Effects and Safety:
Ketamine can elevate blood pressure and heart rate, create shortness of breath, and gastrointestinal discomfort. Patients may feel drowsy, experience blurry vision, and feel strange and unreal. This has the potential to last a few hours after the treatment. We have not seen ketamine cravings in any of our patients nor have we found any studies demonstrating that IVKIT leads to ketamine cravings. When IVKIT is administered by a medical professional using the proper protocols it can have a very high impact with very low side effects.
Cost and Insurance
The elephant in the room at every ketamine clinic is the cost of IVKIT. It is incredibly frustrating that insurance companies won’t cover the cost when it is proven to surpass other treatment methods in efficacy and safety. These two factors lead to a lot of anxiety when it comes to making the decision to go forward with IVKIT.
Ketamine is an FDA approved drug that is one of the most common anesthetics used in general anesthesia. IVKIT for depression, chronic pain, and similar disorders is not an FDA approved use, so only some insurance companies pay for this treatment. We will not bill your insurance company, but will provide a "super-bill" to submit to your insurance company for possible reimbursement if you choose. If they won't cover the cost, they may allow you to claim your expenses toward your deductible, which may limit other medical financial liabilities greatly in the future. You can still claim the cost of IV Ketamine Infusion Therapy on your Tax Return (Form 1040) in the Medical and Dental Expenses Section if you qualify for that deduction.
But really, $3600 for the first 6 treatments! That’s a lot of cash. We know. Obviously we are biased, but it is easy for us to think that is a great deal. That is because we have seen the results. Other treatments may cost less out-of-pocket, but they are nowhere nearly as effective. So while it is less money, it is somewhat wasted. The old adage, “Buy the best, cry once; buy the worst, cry over-and-over” means a lot here. Twenty years of wasted time on SSRI’s is a recipe for a lot of heartache and lost time. Time is our most valuable asset and “they aren’t making any more of it.”
So, what do you get for the $600 you pay for each infusion? And what questions should you ask if you find a lower priced facility.
We look forward to working with you and beginning your journey.
Shanna and Adam Angel
Sun Valley Ketamine Clinic, LLC.