Los Angeles’ Premier Pain Management Specialists located in Santa Monica, CA.

Ketamine Infusion


Ketamine Affects Pain and Depression by Acting at the Receptor Level

Ketamine Infusion

Ketamine infusion is safe and can be provided on an outpatient basis. It helps manage pain symptoms from complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) and some other pain disorders. Many patients affected by neuropathic pain do not experience the desired benefits from opioid use, and can develop physical dependency or addiction. CRPS produces a burning pain that can worsen over time. It becomes a central nervous system disorder that can affect the entire body.

Ketamine infusion therapy works to treat CRPS by addressing the transmission and perception of pain in the nervous system. Ketamine is a NMDA receptor antagonist which can interact with receptors involved with pain transmission and central sensitization. The medication has analgesic properties that also affect the production of nitric oxide, which is also involved in pain /perception.

Before the procedure, conscious sedation s administered before the ketamine is administered. Vital signs and conscious state of the patient are consistently supervised. We require patients to avoid eating or drinking anything at least 6 hours before the procedure.

During the post-procedure period, patients may feel drowsy or dizzy. Transportation to the treatment office can be arranged ahead of time, which is recommended as patients are not permitted to drive immediately following the infusion.. Most patients achieve 3 months of pain relief after completing a full series of infusions.

I. Frequency of Infusions

The number of ketamine infusions required depends on the type of problem the patient is experiencing. We observe responses with the trial infusions. Up to ten infusions are recommended depending on response to trial infusions

II. Eating and Drinking on the Day of the Procedure

Patients who have scheduled their infusion in the morning must have not consumed any foods or liquids after midnight of the previous night. Sips of water with medications is safe.

III. Side Effects

As a single application, Ketamine has been known to cause hallucinations. This is prevented by administering midazolam, which is a benzodiazepine type. Patients may also feel drowsy or less physically active for one hour or two after treatment. The tiredness may occur for a few hours.

IV. Length of Pain Relief

Following a successful infusion, there should be a prolonged period of pain relief that extends from weeks to months.  Additional booster infusions may be required to maintain relief for an extended period of time.


California Pain Medicine Center
2001 Santa Monica Blvd, Suite 1280W
Santa Monica, CA 90404
Phone: 310-264-7246
Fax: 310-882-7005

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