Treating pain and, in particular, chronic pain isn’t always as straightforward as treating a single cause. A cut might hurt, for example, then hurts less as it heals. Chronic pain can linger even after the original injury is gone, or it could be due to a degenerative condition that won’t heal.
At Premier Pain Consultants in San Antonio, Texas, Dmitriy Buyanov, MD, specializes in finding solutions for pain due to a wide range of conditions. A relatively new method of reducing chronic pain uses the effects of low-dose ketamine infusions.
Used as a general anesthetic for decades, ketamine has some unique properties that ideally suit it for the treatment of both pain and mental health conditions like anxiety and depression. When we encounter patients with pain symptoms that resist conventional conservative treatment protocols, we often recommend ketamine intravenous (IV) therapy as an alternative.
It’s a versatile option, capable of handling a wide range of pain conditions. Today, we take an in-depth look at five pain conditions that respond well to ketamine infusions.
Neuropathic pain refers to conditions in which nerve tissue itself becomes damaged, resulting in abnormal pain signals that have little to do with your physical condition.
Neuropathy often results from diabetes, where high blood sugar damages nerves in the feet and legs. Conditions like shingles, multiple sclerosis, or alcoholism can also cause damage from neuropathic pain.
Ketamine infusions block certain pain receptors in the brain. Essentially, as a pain signal from neuropathic pain attempts to report to your brain, it finds that the receptors are busy processing ketamine. Pain signals have nowhere to go, thus relieving pain.
CRPS typically starts after you recover from an injury like a bone fracture, sprain, or even after minor surgery. It produces severe sensory reactions from minor stimulation.
For example, you may touch a warm coffee cup, yet feel a sensation that suggests scalding hot. Medical researchers don’t fully understand CPRS, and it can be difficult to treat.
A 45-minute low-dose ketamine infusion delivers pain relief directly to your bloodstream. Once again, ketamine occupies the receptors that receive these exaggerated pain signals. Since these receptors can’t pass on a pain message, you feel relief.
Fibromyalgia has similarities to CRPS, though it produces effects throughout your entire body, not just a single region. Once again, pain signals seem amplified beyond the proportions of the stimulus. Your body once again over-reports pain.
When conservative treatments no longer produce effective results, fibromyalgia generally responds well to ketamine infusion therapy.
Migraine headaches are notoriously hard to treat. In many cases, all you can do is ride out the course of the episode before returning to your normal life.
The pain relief chemistry of ketamine also seems to block pain symptoms in some migraine patients, providing an alternative when traditional treatments fail.
Your legs and feet can be vulnerable to pain stemming from blockages in the arteries of your legs. The disease behind these blockages is atherosclerosis, a buildup of cholesterol plaque that inhibits blood flow efficiency.
While ketamine infusions won’t remove these blockages, it does handle the pain symptoms that critical limb ischemia creates. A single treatment with ketamine produced significant pain-relief results in clinical trials.
Learn more about this exciting pain relief option at Premier Pain Consultants in San Antonio, Texas. You can book your session by phone or by using our convenient online link. Schedule your appointment today.