Study shows monitoring essential to safety of ketamine for depression
Patients, carers and advocates say better evidence is needed on the safety of ketamine for depression after long-term use, and that those prescribed it must be closely monitored.
A new study undertaken by the NIHR Oxford Health Biomedical Research Centre and the NIHR Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre has found that those using ketamine to treat depression must be monitored closely. The study also concludes that better evidence is needed on the drug’s safety for long-term use.
The research, published in the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ BJPsych Open comes after Professor Rupert McShane, Consultant Psychiatrist at Oxford Health and joint senior author of the study, published a blog in the BMJ calling for a monitoring system for both ketamine and esketamine.
On 13 July, the Guardian reported that Ketamine could be licensed for depression in the UK within a year and cited Professor Allan Young from the NIHR Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre as saying the drug could “offer new hope” for “the substantial proportion of patients who do not respond to conventional drugs”.
Published: 31 July 2019