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Ketamine Side Effects to Be Aware Of

Ketamine Side Effects to Be Aware Of

While you may think that only hard drugs like cocaine can have serious side effects or be addictive and that’s why people go to specific cocaine addiction treatment programs, this is simply not the case.

From the over the counter Advil to hard drugs like meth, every drug has side effects, some are just worse than others. So, whether you are ready to pop a pill from the medicine in your cabinet or you plan to experiment with some drugs with your friends, you need to be aware of the consequences.

What Is Ketamine?

Ketamine is a medication that is mainly used for anesthesia to help sedate someone. It creates a trance-like state and can help with pain relief in smaller doses. There has also been new research on the possibility that it could treat depression. Although it has its medical purposes, some people use this drug incorrectly. Ketamine has been abused as a club drug for its hallucinogenic and dissociative properties. Overdose and addiction are both possible when taking ketamine, so it is important to seek out substance abuse treatment immediately after the first signs of addiction.

Ketamine Drug Effects

Whether taken medically or recreationally, the ketamine side effects can range from mild to severe. Typically, someone who is taking ketamine for medical purposes will be carefully monitored in order to avoid any problems, but for those using this club drug recreationally and unsupervised by a medical professional, taking the drug is more dangerous.

 Possible ketamine side effects include:

  • Delusions, hallucination, or a separation from reality
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Problems with eyesight
  • Poor coordination
  • Memory loss especially with prolonged use
  • Stomach pain or vomiting
  • Chest pain or tightness
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Less sensitivity to pain that could result in serious injury
  • Organ damage with repeated use
  • Convulsions or seizures
  • Overdose
  • Addiction

Because ketamine’s adverse effects can even be deadly, it is important that you do not take this drug in any way that is not prescribed by your doctor. When people use this drug recreationally, they will often do so while drinking or sometimes even in conjunction with another drug intentionally or not. While ketamine was only responsible for less than 1% of emergency room visits involving illicit drugs in the United States in 2011, 71.5% of the time these visits also involved alcohol use.1 If you find yourself having to take more of the drug to get the same ketamine effects as when you first started taking it, you may be addicted. An IOP for addiction like ours could help you kick this bad habit for good.

The worst thing you can do for a substance abuse problem is wait to get help. If you or a loved one is addicted to drugs or alcohol, get treatment now.

Call us today at 888-280-4763 to learn more about the program we offer here at Banyan Chicago.


  1. NCBI - Ketamine Toxicity
Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa, Director of Digital Marketing
Alyssa is the National Director of Digital Marketing and is responsible for a multitude of integrated campaigns and events in the behavioral health and addictions field. All articles have been written by Alyssa and medically reviewed by our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Darrin Mangiacarne.