Opinion: The New Ketamine-Based Antidepressant Is a Rip-Off

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From VICE: “In a popular and public move, the United States’ Federal Drug Administration recently approved intranasal esketamine, one of the components of the psychedelic ketamine, for treatment-resistant depression. The nasal spray costs nearly $900 per dose—or roughly $7,000 for the first month of treatment, and each treatment takes at least two hours in a clinic. (It has yet to be decided how much of the cost insurance plans will cover.)

Esketamine can be unwieldy to use and carries a number of significant potential side effects. Shockingly, it was no better than placebo in two of the three short-term Phase-III studies submitted to the FDA for approval.

But the biggest problem at hand is not the drug itself. It’s the fact that instead of representing a revolution in mental health treatment, as it has been touted to do, esketamine is not a breakthrough at all. It’s just a way for pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson to make a significant profit off gullible insurance companies and vulnerable patients.”

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6 COMMENTS

  1. What worked for me in the 1990s was meditation. It wasn’t very expensive maybe £20.00 and taught by the Western Buddhist Fellowship (in Central London).

    I’d been on antidepressants, which I believe were prescribed, to cover for my suicidal reactions to Strong Psychiatric Drugs.

    I had come off maintenance doses of psychiatric drugs suitable for schizophrenia, and I was certainly miserable but I wouldn’t equate this to genuine clinical depression.

    I am aware that meditation might not work for everyone – but it certainly did work consistently for me.

    (I now have 30 years plus independence of the MH Services).

  2. Hmm ketamine?
    Why? I thought the other pills were working?
    OHHH, right, people become AD resistant lol. Treatment resistant anyone?
    Is that like chemo not working for cancer?
    Or Tylenol not working for headaches?
    Mental illness itself was an invention.
    Suffering however was not.
    ketamine shmetamine, Prozac shmozac.

  3. From the NYTimes, “A nasal spray version of the drug ketamine has shown promise as an antidepressant, even if its properties still aren’t well understood.”

    “Esketamine can be unwieldy to use and carries a number of significant potential side effects. Shockingly, it was no better than placebo in two of the three short-term Phase-III studies submitted to the FDA for approval.”

    Can anyone say, “Fake news”?

    “It’s just a way for pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson to make a significant profit off gullible insurance companies and vulnerable patients.” Just like all the other “depression treatments,” or worse?

  4. Perhaps psychiatry should band together, the way x-clients and clients do.
    Form their own coalition to complain about the garbage drugs that the FDA passes. Complain to insurance companies that demand labels for the clients. Complain to colleges that the DSM and drugs are not working long term and that they demand a new look at what they have been terming MI.
    I think all psychiatrists should quit for a year and see what happens.
    Perhaps they can join us.

    I watched a video today of the pills being spat out of the drug makers machinery. I guess it’s kind of like watching hot dogs being made lol.
    It boggles the mind how much we pump out in the last 100 years and we are worse off than ever.
    Has this crossed anyone’s mind? I dread to see us in 500 years.

    So if I was a shrink, I might start to think beyond MI in just certain people. But oppressed need for esteem is rampant.

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