IV Ketamine in PTLS


Effects of intravenous ketamine in a patient with post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome

Authors Hanna AF, Abraham B, Hanna A, Smith AJ

Published 18 August 2017 Volume 2017:10 Pages 305—308


Video abstract presented by Ashraf F Hanna.

Department of Pain Management, Florida Spine Institute, Clearwater, FL, USA

Abstract: Post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome (PTLDS) is a pain disorder for which there remains no gold standard treatment option. Here, we report a case of PTLDS in a female patient whose pain was refractory to treatment options such as radiofrequency ablation, vitamin infusion therapy, opioid analgesics, and other pharmacotherapies. The patient commenced an experimental intravenous ketamine infusion therapy at the Florida Spine Institute (Clearwater, FL, USA) and achieved relief from her chronic pain, an improved quality of life, reduced depression and suicidal ideation, and reduced opioid consumption.



While I am always on board for relief of patient’s symptoms, PTLS is defined as symptoms remaining after Lyme treatment.  Knowing that this treatment by the mainstream medical establishment is seriously lacking due to the ignorance of borrelia itself (the fact it shape-shifts and persists) as well as the ignorance of coinfection involvement (which necessitates numerous drugs, not just doxycycline) , I question the entire premise of PTLS.  Ketamine may very well be a bandaid covering serious infections that need to be dealt with.


Also, it’s important to note what Ketamine is:  http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/302663.php

The drug has hallucinogenic, tranquilizing and dissociative effects, and is one of the recreational drugs used illegally in the club drug scene.

Here are some key points about ketamine:

  • Ketamine was first synthesized in 1962 by Parke-Davis and classified as a controlled substance in the US in 1999.
  • The US military used ketamine as a field anesthetic during the Vietnam War.
  • Ketamine blocks the neurotransmitter glutamate at the receptor, causing a trance-like state and disconnection from one’s environment.
  • Ketamine is the most widely used anesthetic in veterinary medicine.
  • Ketamine is often used as an anesthetic in parts of the world that have limited availability of resuscitation equipment.
  • Because it is odorless, colorless and can render the user unable to move, ketamine has been used as a date rape drug.
  • Ketamine abuse is associated with the use of other “club drugs” including ecstasy.
  • Ketamine is structurally similar to phencyclidine (PCP).
  • Most of the ketamine illegally distributed in the US is diverted or stolen from legitimate sources – particularly veterinary clinics.
  • The complicated, multistep process involved in synthesizing ketamine prevents illicit production of the drug.

A question that begs to be asked is how will Ketamine affect Lyme and other coinfections such as Bartonella which commonly give patients psychiatric symptoms including: hallucinations, anxiety, panic attacks, confusion, memory loss, suicidal ideations, depersonalization, and other cognitive issues similar to side-effects of the drug itself?

Before we simply raise our hands in surrender and take a drug that can put us in a stuporous trance I think we need to continue to do important research as to why patients continue to have debilitating symptoms.

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