IV Ketamine Infusions at Relief Mental Health

At Relief Mental Health, we work closely with each patient to assess their specific needs and identify their unique treatment goals. Since response to ketamine varies with each individual patient, we create an optimal treatment plan – including infusion dosage and schedule – and consider other factors like how a patient responds to their initial ketamine sessions.

Diagnoses: Indications for IV Ketamine

Off-label use of IV ketamine is indicated for: 

  • Treatment-resistant depression (TRD)
  • Major depressive disorder (MDD)
  • Bipolar depression (BD-I & BD-II)
  • Anxiety disorders (AD)
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)/Trauma-related disorders)
  • Other mental health diagnoses

What does off-label use mean?

The FDA approves of the off-label use of a medication if evidence shows it’s effective and beneficial for a specific diagnosis, a medical professional believes it will help a patient with that diagnosis, and the patient agrees to the off-label use of the medication.

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Evidence Base for IV Ketamine

Over the past two and a half decades, peer-reviewed research on ketamine shows the following:

  • IV ketamine can reduce symptoms associated with depressive diagnoses quickly, in as little as 40 minutes.
  • The symptom relief timeline varies for each patient; booster infusions are available and scheduled as needed depending on the patient’s response to the treatment and to ensure symptom relief is maintained.
  • Research shows 70 percent of patients with depressive symptoms experience improvement with ketamine treatment.

Additional studies show similar symptom relief for the diagnoses mentioned above, including bipolar depression, anxiety, PTSD, and individuals with alcohol or substance use disorder (AUD/SUD) who have at least two weeks of sobriety before initiating treatment with IV ketamine.

Our IV Ketamine Process

Patients will engage in either a virtual or in-person consultation to determine whether IV ketamine is the appropriate treatment approach for their diagnosis. For safety reasons, we require patients with suicidal ideations to meet our clinicians in person.

After an initial consultation and if the patient is deemed clinically appropriate, an appointment is scheduled for the patient to return at his or her earliest convenience. Here’s what treatment looks like:

  • Patient and clinician will take about 15 minutes to prepare and get settled in a private, quiet room with a comfortable chair and administer the infusion through an IV.
  • The infusion itself will last 45 minutes.
  • A Relief clinician will monitor the patient’s physicial and mental health vitals after the infusion. They will discharge you to a safe trusted friver when they feel you are ready.

Typically, the full appointment – infusion plus observation – lasts about an hour and a half. The entire experience is designed for the comfort and safety of our patients. Our compassionate providers curate the experience to maximize the cognitive and therapeutic benefits while patients relax in a comfortable chair in a peaceful, soothing environment.

Because one potential side-effect of treatment with IV ketamine may be drowsiness, it’s important for patients to arrange transportation support to and from each IV ketamine infusion session.

IV Ketamine: Typical Treatment Schedule

A course of treatment with IV ketamine for patients is typically as follows:

  • Six (6) ketamine infusions over 2-3 weeks
  • Some patients may require booster sessions, determined by the strength and length of their response to their initial course of treatment
  • Booster schedule varies, but may occur once per month, twice a year, or at a frequency determined by the patient and medical personnel.

Paying for IV Ketamine Infusions

IV ketamine is not covered by insurance. Relief does offer packages for IV ketamine and will discount the cost if paid in full and up front. If payment arrangements are needed, financing is available with advancecard.com and  mymedicalfunding.com. Active duty and former first responders, activity duty military personnel, and veterans can take advantage of our HERO discount for IV ketamine. Please ask your intake coordinator for details on this program.

Frequently Asked Questions: IV Ketamine Infusions

Are IV ketamine infusions safe?

Yes, treatment with IV ketamine infusions is safe. IV ketamine is approved for off-label use for the treatment of treatment-resistant depression (TRD) in adults, depressive symptoms in adults with major depressive disorder (MDD) with acute suicidal ideation or behavior, bipolar depression (BD-I &BD-II), anxiety disorder (AD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), trauma-related conditions, and other mental health conditions.

What does off-label use mean?

This means the FDA approves the use of a medication if evidence shows it’s effective and beneficial for a specific diagnosis, a physician believes it will help a patient with that diagnosis, and you, the patient, agree to the off-label use of the medication.

Are there any side-effects associated with IV ketamine treatment?

In some cases, patients may experience sleepiness, dizziness, nausea, and/or dissociation during treatment. We monitor you closely for any side-effects and/or warning signs during your infusion. A Relief Mental Health clinician is always present to address any problems or concerns as they arise during an IV ketamine infusion.

Where will I take IV ketamine?

You’ll receive your IV ketamine infusion in a comfortable outpatient setting.

How will I take IV ketamine?

A qualified Relief clinician will administer your infusion with an intravenous drip.

How long will my IV ketamine infusion sessions last?

A full IV ketamine infusion session takes an hour and a half to two hours. You arrive at our clinic, spend about 15 minutes getting settled in and prepared, then your clinician starts your infusion. The infusion itself lasts about 45 minutes. You’ll remain under the observation of a trained and qualified Relief Mental Health clinician for a minimum of 30 minutes after the infusion is complete.

Can I drive to my appointments?

Because the potential side effects of IV ketamine include drowsiness, dizziness, and sedation, it’s important to arrange transportation to and from each treatment session. Although these side effects fade rapidly, you should plan for someone else to drive you to and from your IV ketamine infusion sessions.

How many sessions will I need?

The exact number of treatment sessions depends on your treatment progress, how you feel about the treatment, and the input of your therapist/psychiatrist. In most cases, patients at Relief Mental Health participate in six (6) IV ketamine infusions over 2-3 weeks. You may schedule additional boosters as needed, in collaboration with your psychiatrist/therapist.

Is IV ketamine right for me?

Relief Mental Health will provide you with an assessment to see if IV ketamine is an appropriate treatment for you. Contact us today to learn if IV ketamine is right for you.

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