Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy

Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP) is a modality of therapy in which ketamine is used as a complement to psychotherapy to help patients experience more frequent breakthroughs and sustained improvement in symptoms. Below is more information about KAP to help you navigate whether it may be a good fit for you.

What is ketamine?

Ketamine is a substance that was first synthesized in the early 1960s. It is commonly used in medical settings to induce anesthesia. At lower dosages, tt has recently been discovered to help with depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as well. Ketamine has been studied to see its possible benefits in helping to treat a number of mental health problems or nervous system disorders, including: substance dependencies, depression, PTSD, bipolar depression and chronic pain. 

Ketamine has rapidly-acting antidepressant and mood-enhancing effects, which can begin to take effect within 1-2 hours after treatment and last for up to 2 weeks. It works by blocking the brain’s NMDA receptors as well as by stimulating AMPA receptors, which are thought to help form new synaptic connections and boost neural circuits that regulate stress and mood. Ketamine has also been shown to enhance overall neuroplasticity for lasting symptom improvement. Ketamine can be administered in a variety of ways, including IV infusion, intramuscular injection, nasal spray, and sublingual lozenges. In my work, the only form of this medicine available for KAP sessions with me is sublingual lozenges taken orally.

How does ketamine feel and what is KAP like?

The ketamine session itself typically lasts 3 hours and I will be with you throughout the session. With sublingual lozenges, the effects begin to appear after about 15- 20 minutes, peak for about 40 minutes, and dissipate over the following 1-2 hours. During the process, it is possible to take additional lozenges to adjust the effect. The effects are found to be pleasant by most people though sometimes challenging content and emotions can come up, requiring support. These effects can make you feel far away from your body and facilitate shifts in perception that can often feel expansive in nature. Your motor and verbal abilities will be reduced, so you’ll be lying down in a comfortable position during the experience and have a hard time walking. Once these effects subsided, we will spend the remainder of the session giving you space to process and discuss your experience.  It is a lot like standard talk therapy, but you may find that you have access to more emotions, more memories that come up, and that connections that you have not made before in your life come easily. 

I am  there to support you and guide you through the process, having met with you, learned your challenges and issues, in order to  partner with you as you have this experience. While it may feel hard to articulate what happened during the experience, clients usually feel like the insights gained are clear. Studies have shown that the benefits to mood and neurological growth can last up to two weeks after the ketamine experience.

What is the process of undergoing KAP?

KAP is a multi-part process:

What is the cost of treatment?

Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP) is an affordable, accessible modality. For the preparation and integration sessions, my normal hourly rate for psychotherapy is $150/hr and we will have at least two preparation and two integration sessions before and after the actual KAP session. The KAP session will normally take three hours and the rate for that session as a whole is $650 as the overall timing of it can be a little unpredictable, depending on how you respond to ketamine. 

Medical Costs

Estimated Total Costs

KAP work is not currently covered by most insurance though this may change in the future.

Total: $1,585 to $1,735