Over the years, while being used for other applications, physicians noted the secondary soothing effect of Ketamine for anxiety. While low dose IV Ketamine infusions are best known for the treatment of refractory depression, they may also help short-term anxiety. A study from 2017, looked at the effect of Ketamine treatment on patients with GAD (generalized anxiety disorder) and SAD (social anxiety disorder), who weren’t currently depressed, but were also not responding to the standard anti-anxiety medications. Because anxiety and depression are marked by related changes in the brain, and Ketamine affects them positively, depressive symptoms may also subside during treatment for anxiety. The study’s results concluded that Ketamine was safe, well-tolerated, has potential as an anti-anxiety pharmacologic candidate. “Recent data suggest that Ketamine, given intravenously, might be the most important breakthrough in antidepressant treatment in decades.” -Thomas Insel, Director National Institute of Mental Health (2002–2015)
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