Ketamine Research

The below are selected research papers supporting the use of ketamine. Feel free to discuss any questions about these with Dr. MacDonald.



A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled, Dose-Frequency Study of Intravenous Ketamine in Patients With Treatment-Resistant Depression
Filippo Drago-Filippo Caraci – F1000 – Post-publication peer review of the biomedical literature – 2017

A Single Ketamine Infusion Combined With Motivational Enhancement Therapy for Alcohol Use Disorder: A Randomized Midazolam-Controlled Pilot Trial
Elias Dakwar, M.D., Frances Levin, M.D., Carl L. Hart, Ph.D., Cale Basaraba, M.P.H., Jean Choi, M.S., Martina Pavlicova, Ph.D., Edward V. Nunes, M.D.

Acute Antidepressant Effects Of Intramuscular Versus Intravenous Ketamine
Harihar Chilukuri-Narasimhapothula Reddy-Rammohan Pathapati-Arkalgudnagesha Manu-Sharada Jollu-Ahammedbasha Shaik – Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine – 2014

Antidepressant, Mood Stabilizing And Procognitive Effects Of Very Low Dose Sublingual Ketamine In Refractory Unipolar And Bipolar Depression
Diogo Lara-Luisa Bisol-Luciano Munari – The International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology – 2013

A Single Ketamine Infusion Combined With Mindfulness-Based Behavioral Modification to Treat Cocaine Dependence: A Randomized Clinical Trial
Elias Dakwar, M.D., Edward V. Nunes, M.D., Carl L. Hart, Ph.D., Richard W. Foltin, Ph.D., Sanjay J. Mathew, M.D., Kenneth M. Carpenter, Ph.D., C.J. “Jean” Choi, M.S., Cale N. Basaraba, M.P.H., Martina Pavlicova, Ph.D., Frances R. Levin, M.D.

Efficacy of Intravenous Ketamine for Treatment of Chronic Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Adriana Feder-Michael Parides-James Murrough-Andrew Perez-Julia Morgan-Shireen Saxena-Katherine Kirkwood-Marije Rot-Kyle Lapidus-Le-Ben Wan-Dan Iosifescu-Dennis Charney – JAMA Psychiatry – 2014

Evidence that Subanesthetic Doses of Ketamine Cause Sustained Disruptions of NMDA and AMPA-Mediated Frontoparietal Connectivity in Humans
Suresh Muthukumaraswamy-Alexander Shaw-Laura Jackson-Judith Hall-Rosalyn Moran-Neeraj Saxena – The Journal of Neuroscience – 2015

Ketamine as treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder: a review

Ketamine can reduce harmful drinking by pharmacologically rewriting drinking memories
Ravi K. Das 1*, Grace Gale1, Katie Walsh1, Vanessa E. Hennessy1, Georges Iskandar 2, Luke A. Mordecai3, Brigitta Brandner3, Merel Kindt4, H. Valerie Curran1 & Sunjeev K. Kamboj1

Ketamine psychotherapy for heroin addiction: immediate effects and two-year follow-up
Evgeny Krupitsky, M.D., Ph.D.*, Andrey Burakov, M.D., Tatyana Romanova, M.A., Igor Dunaevsky, M.D., Rick Strassman, M.D., Alexander Grinenko, M.D.

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If you’ve been in therapy before and have found that it stalled or was not helpful, ketamine psychotherapy may offer a fresh, novel option to help your process.

Use of ketamine to facilitate psychotherapy is both relatively common among those who use ketamine, and off-label (meaning ketamine is not approved by the FDA for this purpose).

Ketamine has interesting effects on memory and defense mechanisms.  Defense mechanisms are psychological/brain reflexes that get in the way of important memory networks and emotions that may benefit from processing in therapy.

The use of ketamine to facilitate psychotherapy builds on the fact that it can facilitate a more open stance in which defense mechanisms are lowered. Research on memory reprocessing (see “ketamine research”) raises exciting questions about whether ketamine may biologically enhance psychotherapy that hasn’t worked in the past.

Dr. MacDonald has extensive experience and training in multiple forms of psychotherapy. It’s been a bedrock of his practice over the last decade.  As noted elsewhere, he also has extensive experience with ketamine in multiple forms and contexts.  Contact him if you may be interested in ketamine psychotherapy.

[/su_spoiler] [su_spoiler title=”Ketamine treatment for PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)” open=”no” style=”default” icon=”plus” anchor=”” class=””]

Buoyed by research on ketamine in depression and ketamine’s effects on memory, active research is examining whether ketamine may be useful for PTSD (see “ketamine research” tab).

Like many of the treatments used in psychiatry, ketamine treatment of PTSD is still off-label, meaning the FDA has not approved its use for this disorder.

Dr. MacDonald has extensive experience treating many forms of trauma, including childhood trauma, military trauma and sexual trauma. His office setting is intimate and comfortable, creating a sense of safety.

Contact Dr. McDonald if you may be interested in exploring ketamine treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder.

[/su_spoiler] [su_spoiler title=”Ketamine treatment for Addiction” open=”no” style=”default” icon=”plus” anchor=”” class=””]

Although ketamine has been studied and found helpful for treatment of addiction over a decade ago, recent research in top-line journals (see “ketamine research” tab) raises the exciting possibility that ketamine may be a helpful treatment in the battle against addiction.

Dr. MacDonald is board-certified in addiction medicine, has been the medical director of an addiction treatment facility for over a decade, and has extensive experience with ketamine.

Contact Dr. MacDonald if you may be interested in exploring ketamine treatment of addiction.

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Ketamine Psychedelic Therapy (KPT): A Review of the Results of Ten Years of Research
E.M. Krupitsky, M.D., Ph.D.* & A.Y. Gringenko, M.D., Ph.D.*

Ketamine for Rapid Reduction of Suicidal Thoughts in Major Depression: A Midazolam-Controlled Randomized Clinical Trial
Michael Grunebaum-Hanga Galfalvy-Tse-Hwei Choo-John Keilp-Vivek Moitra-Michelle Parris-Julia Marver-Ainsley Burke-Matthew Milak-M. Sublette-Maria Oquendo-J. Mann – American Journal of Psychiatry – 2018

Ketamine Treatment For Depression: Opportunities For Clinical Innovation And Ethical Foresight
Ilina Singh-Celia Morgan-Valerie Curran-David Nutt-Anne Schlag-Rupert Mcshane – The Lancet Psychiatry – 2017

Long-Term Maintenance With Intramuscular Ketamine for Treatment-Resistant Bipolar II Depression
Cristina Cusin-George Hilton-Andrew Nierenberg-Maurizio Fava – American Journal of Psychiatry – 2012

Replication of Ketamine’s Antidepressant Efficacy in Bipolar Depression: A Randomized Controlled Add-On Trial
Carlos Zarate-Nancy Brutsche-Lobna Ibrahim-Jose Franco-Chaves-Nancy Diazgranados-Anibal Cravchik-Jessica Selter-Craig Marquardt-Victoria Liberty-David Luckenbaugh – Biological Psychiatry – 2012

Safety And Efficacy Of Maintenance Ketamine Treatment In Patients With Treatment-refractory Generalised Anxiety And Social Anxiety Disorders
Paul Glue-Shona Neehoff-Natalie Medlicott-Andrew Gray-Guy Kibby-Neil Mcnaughton – Journal of Psychopharmacology – 2018

Side-effects Associated With Ketamine Use In Depression: A Systematic Review
Brooke Short-Joanna Fong-Veronica Galvez-William Shelker-Colleen Loo – The Lancet Psychiatry – 2018

Synaptic Potentiation Is Critical for Rapid Antidepressant Response to Ketamine in Treatment-Resistant Major Depression
Brian Cornwell-Giacomo Salvadore-Maura Furey-Craig Marquardt-Nancy Brutsche-Christian Grillon-Carlos Zarate – Biological Psychiatry – 2012

Subanesthetic Dose Ketamine in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: A Role for Reconsolidation During Trauma-Focused Psychotherapy?
Cato Veen, Gabriel Jacobs, Ingrid Philippens, and Eric Vermetten

What Is The Mechanism Of Ketamine’s Rapid-onset Antidepressant Effect? A Concise Overview Of The Surprisingly Large Number Of Possibilities
Strasburger-P. Bhimani-J. Kaabe-J. Krysiak-D. Nanchanatt-T. Nguyen-K. Pough-T. Prince-N. Ramsey-K. Savsani-L. Scandlen-M. Cavaretta-R. Raffa – Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics – 2017