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Ketamine Reduces Suicidal Thoughts in Depressed Patients

Accepted submission by takyon at 2017-12-15 22:25:58
Science

Study: Suicidal Thoughts Rapidly Reduced with Ketamine [sciencedaily.com]

Ketamine was significantly more effective than a commonly used sedative in reducing suicidal thoughts in depressed patients, according to researchers at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC). They also found that ketamine's anti-suicidal effects occurred within hours after its administration.

The findings were published online last week in the American Journal of Psychiatry.

Ketamine for Rapid Reduction of Suicidal Thoughts in Major Depression: A Midazolam-Controlled Randomized Clinical Trial [psychiatryonline.org] (DOI: 10.1176/appi.ajp.2017.17060647) (DX [doi.org])

The reduction in SSI score at day 1 was 4.96 points greater for the ketamine group compared with the midazolam [wikipedia.org] group (95% CI=2.33, 7.59; Cohen's d=0.75). The proportion of responders (defined as having a reduction ≥50% in SSI score) at day 1 was 55% for the ketamine group and 30% for the midazolam group (odds ratio=2.85, 95% CI=1.14, 7.15; number needed to treat=4.0). Improvement in the Profile of Mood States depression subscale was greater at day 1 for the ketamine group compared with the midazolam group (estimate=7.65, 95% CI=1.36, 13.94), and this effect mediated 33.6% of ketamine's effect on SSI score. Side effects were short-lived, and clinical improvement was maintained for up to 6 weeks with additional optimized standard pharmacotherapy in an uncontrolled follow-up.

Related: 4/20: The Third Time's Not the Charm [soylentnews.org]
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