Ketamine therapy is most commonly used to treat depression, but it has also been found to be effective in alleviating chronic migraine pain, especially for patients who haven’t been able to find relief with other treatment methods. In the US, up to 38 million people, or roughly 20 percent of the population, experience migraines. These headaches are much more painful than normal headaches and can come with a pulsing, throbbing pain sometimes accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to sound and light. Migraines that don’t respond to treatment are called intractable migraines or refractory migraines. These types of migraines can be especially debilitating.

There is hope! Ketamine infusions are helping patients get relief from their migraines and improve their quality of life. A study of 61 patients presented at the Anesthesiology 2017 annual meeting found that almost 75 percent experienced an improvement in their migraines after a three- to seven-day course of inpatient treatment with ketamine.

In today’s blog, we’ll be sharing some promising research on what ketamine infusions can do for people with migraines, particularly intractable migraines. Continue reading to learn more and if you’d like to schedule an appointment to discuss whether ketamine infusions are right for you, contact Karitas Ketamine Clinic in West Covina. We truly believe that ketamine can change lives, and we’re proud to provide our Southern California community with affordable ketamine infusions.

Ketamine – A Unique Treatment Option

Ketamine infusions can be effective in treating a variety of neuropathic pain conditions, including chronic headaches and migraines. Ketamine is used as an alternative to opiate-based painkillers because it targets different receptors in the brain. Opioids relieve pain by targeting opiate receptors, which can lead to addiction. Ketamine infusions, on the other hand, target N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors. This is also why it is useful in treating depression because it works differently than SSRIs, which target serotonin receptors. The NMDA receptor is responsible for the body’s underlying neural network, which is responsible for processing pain signals. Over-activation of this receptor can lead to many different pain disorders including chronic migraines. Ketamine infusions are thought to correct this over-activation, and thus relieve pain. Ketamine is a promising, unique treatment option. If you suffer from chronic migraine pain talk to your doctor about whether ketamine infusions may be right for you or contact Karitas Ketamine Clinic in West Covina.

More research needs to be done on the NMDA receptor, but studies are showing that ketamine holds a lot of promise as a new treatment for migraines. A study published in the journal Pain Medicine found that ketamine infusions administered over a five year period resulted in a significant reduction in pain. In half of the patients, the relief lasted for up to 3 weeks.

Intractable Migraines

While all migraines can be debilitating, intractable migraines are the most serious type of migraine. It is a persistent, debilitating migraine that significantly affects a person’s ability to function. Most migraine symptoms can be minimized by working to control triggers and making lifestyle changes, but intractable migraines continue to make a major impact on patients’ lives even after making these changes.

Intractable migraines also do not usually respond well to medications. Even anti-inflammatory methods fail to relieve pain. Those who suffer from this type of migraine often describe them as relentless or never-ending. The pain, like any type of chronic pain, simply becomes a fact of life. You go to bed with it, wake up with it, and move through the day with pain and nausea. It is a difficult condition to have, and the emotional toll of enduring the pain and being unable to relieve it is unbearable.

Signs and Symptoms:

  • A headache that lasts longer than 72 hours
  • Constant, consistent pain on one or booths sides of the head
  • Light sensitivity and/or vision disturbances like flashing lights
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Dizziness

Regular Migraine vs. Intractable Migraine

The difference between a regular migraine and an intractable migraine is the length, severity, and response to treatment. A regular migraine lasts for between four and 72 hours. Treatments like triptan drugs and pain relievers can usually reduce or relieve this type of migraine pain and the symptoms associated with them.

Intractable migraines last longer than 72 hours, even with treatment. The headache may go away for a couple of hours, but it keeps coming back, over and over again. If you suffer from intractable migraines, you understand how debilitating this pain is. Ketamine infusions may be able to help relieve your symptoms. While ketamine infusions are an especially good option for people with intractable migraines, they can also help relieve the symptoms of regular migraines as well.

Karitas Ketamine Clinic West Covina

Here at Karitas Ketamine Clinic, we’ve seen first hand how ketamine can change people’s lives — that’s what led us to open our West Covina ketamine clinic in the first place! And it’s also why we strive to provide clients with the most affordable ketamine infusions possible. We want to make this treatment accessible to everyone who needs it, including those suffering from chronic or intractable migraines.

Follow our blog to learn more about the illnesses ketamine infusions can help treat — including severe anxiety, bipolar depression, and chronic pain. Visit our FAQ page, explore further ketamine research and press, and contact us today to set up an appointment.

If you’ve found this blog post useful, explore our other blog posts about how ketamine infusions can help improve people’s quality of life:

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