Journey Clinical’s medical team supports you on all the medical aspects of the process, which includes determining eligibility, developing a custom treatment plan, prescribing the medicine, and monitoring outcomes. I will be involved in the process in a therapeutic role, being your support throughout and helping you process your experience.
Ketamine is a legal, safe, and effective medicine used to treat a variety of mental health conditions, including depression, anxiety, and PTSD. Ketamine has rapidly-acting antidepressant and mood-enhancing effects, which can begin to take effect within one to two hours after treatment and last for up to two weeks. It works by blocking the brain’s NMDA receptors as well as by stimulating AMPA receptors, which are thought to help form new synaptic connections and boost neural circuits that regulate stress and mood. Ketamine has also been shown to enhance overall neuroplasticity for lasting symptom improvement.
The effects of ketamine, which most patients find pleasant, last for approximately 45 minutes. These effects can make you feel “far from” your body, and facilitate shifts in perception that can often feel expansive in nature.
Your motor and verbal abilities will be reduced, so you’ll be lying down in a comfortable position during the experience. Once these effects subside, we’ll spend the remainder of our appointment giving you space to process and discuss your experience.
While it may feel hard to articulate what happened during the experience, patients feel like the insights gained are none-the-less clear. Studies have shown that the benefits to mood and neurological growth can last up to two weeks after the ketamine experience.
Journey Clinical is a platform for licensed psychotherapists to incorporate science-based psychedelic therapies in their practice safely and effectively, starting with Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP). Journey Clinical’s in-house medical team takes on patient eligibility, prescriptions and outcome monitoring, while I take on the therapy. Their collaborative care model is designed to deliver personalized treatment plans to meet your individual needs and improve long-term outcomes.
Ketamine can be administered in a variety of ways, including IV infusion, intramuscular injection, via nasal spray, and using sublingual lozenges. In my work with Journey Clinical, we only use the sublingual lozenge form.
After our first KAP session, Journey Clinical’s medical team will schedule regular follow-ups with you to monitor outcomes and prescribe ketamine lozenge refills, as appropriate. The frequency of follow-ups depends on your unique treatment plan, at a minimum of once per quarter.
After our KAP dosing session, we will meet for multiple integration therapy sessions to review the memories, thoughts, and insights that arose during your dosing session, and to prepare for the next dosing session.
A typical ketamine dosing session lasts between two to three hours and can take place either in-person at my office or remotely via telehealth. During a dosing session, you will self-administer your ketamine lozenge either in my office or in your home. You will be in a comfortable, reclining position wearing an eye mask and listening to calming music. Although a KAP dosing session may be largely an internal experience, I will be present with you the entire time to hold space and provide support as needed.
Once you receive your ketamine lozenges, we will schedule time together for our KAP preparation, dosing, and integration sessions. Preparation session(s) will be scheduled just like regular therapy sessions prior to the KAP dosing session. The goal of a preparation session is to align the process and set intentions for our KAP sessions together.
First, I’ll help you schedule an initial evaluation with a clinician from the Journey Clinical medical team via Zoom. They will go over your medical and psychiatric history with you, provide education on the treatment, and determine if you are eligible for KAP. If Journey Clinical’s medical team determines that you are eligible for KAP, they will develop a personalized ketamine prescription and outcome monitoring plan for you.
Journey Clinical’s medical staff will write a ketamine prescription for you, and a small amount of oral ketamine will be sent to your home, enough for the first two KAP sessions. You will be taught to take your vitals and self-administer the ketamine lozenges by Journey Clinical’s medical team in advance of our KAP sessions.
If you’re ready to explore KAP on your therapy journey, please reach out to discuss your eligibility, as well as any questions or concerns you have. I’m here with you every step of the way!