Put away your Prozac; trash the Wellbutrin. The cure to depression is ketamine, and doctors are trip-sitting patients across the country.
Treating depression with ketamine isn't a new method, but now, via the New York Times, doctors and researchers at Yale, Mount Sinai and the National Institute of Mental Health are saying a few hours of tripping can have immediate, measurable effects on depressed patients.
Some doctors and patients are not waiting for the pharmaceutical industry. Because ketamine has long been approved for anesthesia, doctors are allowed to use it off-label to treat depression. Clinics charge from $300 to more than $1,000 per treatment. Insurance rarely covers the cost. Schedules vary by clinic and by patient, but some patients are treated every few days at first, then every two weeks to two months.
The medical environment also apparently had no effect on the drug's ability to turn people into stoned, idiot ravers. As one patient tells the Times, she felt "aware enough to change the tunes on her iPod, albeit slowly, but was 'transported into a completely different dimension.' She added, 'Everything there is completely vibrant or molten.'"
[image via AP]