Ketamine for Childhood Depression Treatment


Children have received ketamine safely in medical settings for a significant period, underscoring the drug’s established safety record and its potential for conducting extensive clinical trials.

The safety profile of ketamine in pediatric use

Ketamine, despite its reputation, has been widely utilized in pediatric medical settings, demonstrating an outstanding safety profile. Medical practitioners have administered the drug as a single-dose treatment for analgesia, anesthesia, and sedation, confirming its firmly established track record of safety.

Investigating repeated doses of ketamine in children

The researchers undertook a systematic review of existing research to actively assess the safety of administering repeated doses of ketamine to children. The review encompassed 87 cases where children received extended ketamine therapy, with certain individuals undergoing up to 42 doses.

The study confirmed the drug’s sustained effectiveness without significant adverse effects or tolerance development.

No long-term consequences

Throughout the study, which had a maximum follow-up duration of 6 months, none of the cases examined reported any long-term consequences, including neurocognitive effects. This outcome offers reassuring evidence regarding the safety of administering ketamine repeatedly to children within this timeframe.

Tolerance and metabolic factors

Contrary to concerns about tolerance, the study found that children did not require higher doses of ketamine over time, indicating a lack of tolerance development. Interestingly, some children tolerated higher doses than adults. This observation aligns with children metabolizing ketamine at a faster rate compared to adults.

Side effects and manifestations

The study on pediatric patients actively found that there were no instances of manifestation phenomena, such as delirium and hallucinations, commonly linked to ketamine use in adults. Children experienced mild and transient side effects, with dissociation being the most frequently reported, followed by headache and nausea.


Based on the study’s findings, repeated doses of ketamine appear to be safe for children with depression.

The absence of serious adverse reactions and tolerance development supports the need for large-scale clinical trials, despite observing mild side effects.

Further research in this area holds promise for expanding treatment options and improving outcomes for children with depression.

Read more:

Leave a Reply