Know the Basics of Ketamine Abuse

Ketamine is a dissociative anesthetic developed in the early 1960s and used in human and veterinary medicine. The drug is used for anesthesia. Developed in the 1950s as an intravenous general anesthetic, ketamine was developed as a dissociative anesthetic to replace PCP because of its severe side effects. Learn more about the basics of ketamine abuse.

Street Drug

There are names on the street for ketamine. These include names like:

  • K
  • Special K
  • Vitamin K
  • Super acid
  • Super c
  • Green
  • Jet

Ketamine usually appears as a clear liquid or white or off-white powder. It is sold illegally in pill or capsule form. It is usually tasteless and odorless. In medical settings, ketamine is given intravenously to induce and maintain anesthesia. It is ingested orally in pill or capsule form when used by people in different ways as a result of abuse or addiction.

Use and Effects

As a street drug, ketamine has become popular as a club drug. Dance clubs and raves are places people use it because it is odorless and tasteless. It can be added to beverages without detection and it is known as a ‘date rape drug.’ Ketamine may cause a victim to not speak or move for a time and may induce amnesia. Victims may have a hard time recalling events which took place while under the influence. For the person abusing drugs, the effects of ketamine are similar to PCP, but not as severe and with shorter duration. Users describe a high from ketamine as a pleasant sensation of floating or dissociation from their bodies. A hallucinogenic-like effect may last for an hour or two. Side effects may include:

  • Visual disturbances
  • Confusion
  • Drowsiness
  • Increased heart rate
  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Euphoria
  • Sedation
  • Severe allergic reaction
  • Hypotension and heart rhythm issues
  • Difficulty talking
  • Slowed or depressed breathing

Long-Term Effects

There is little research into long-term effects of ketamine use, studies have shown chronic use of the drug can produce verbal, short-term memory and visual memory loss. It may be irreversible.


Some of the dangers may include long-term cognitive effects. Ketamine increases the effects of other sedatives like benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and opiates, which can cause death. For others, the danger of ketamine is that it may be slipped into a beverage without detection. Drinkers are advised to never leave beverages unattended.The challenge of treating this disorder requires caution and making sure to address co-occurring disorders with other substances and mental health challenges. The biggest issue is to make sure a person is safe when coming down off the drug in detox, which requires supervision in a treatment center.

The Last Resort provides a safe, supportive environment for men in a retreat-like setting. Nature is an important component of recovery and healing. We strive to provide a place of enrichment that cultivates the inner as well as the outer journey of recovery. However you find your way to the Last Resort, we endeavor to provide a haven where you can journey through recovery feeling like your life and story have meaning and a purpose. Call us to find out more: 512-750-6750.