It can be extremely debilitating in its severe forms and may lead to a range of associated problems, from lack of productivity at work to suicide.
Given the severity of the effects of the disease, this is no small problem. And now using ketamine for depression is becoming a more popular and accepted therapy.
In 1964, ketamine was first trialed on human prisoners.
It was found to have high effectiveness in reducing pain and in rendering patients unconscious for surgical procedures. Side effects dissipated rapidly upon emergence from anesthesia.
These findings led to its approval as an anesthetic in 1970 and from that point, it came into wide use. It was particularly important during the Vietnam War.
Most drugs that help treat depression fall under the category of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
Ketamine may actually prompt the brain to produce more glutamate.