There is hope for those with treatment-resistant OCD. A new drug, Esketamine, has been shown to be effective in reducing symptoms in these patients. Esketamine is a derivative of ketamine, which has been used for years as an anesthetic. Researchers believe that the new drug works by blocking NMDA receptors in the brain, which are thought to play a role in OCD. In this blog, we will discuss Esketamine OCD and its benefits.
- 1 Introduction To OCD
- 2 What Is Esketamine?
- 3 What Are The Benefits Of Esketamine For OCD?
- 4 Side Effect Of Esketamine
- 5 Can Esketamine Be Used Long Term?
- 6 Does Esketamine Cause Memory Loss?
- 7 How Many Esketamine Treatments Do You Need?
- 8 Conclusion
Introduction To OCD
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder characterized by intrusive thoughts and repetitive behaviors that interfere with daily activities. Symptoms of this condition can be difficult to manage, there are treatment options available to those who suffer from the disorder. For example, some of the obsessions and compulsions are:
- Checking and rechecking things.
- Washing and cleaning rituals.
- Counting, ordering, or arranging objects.
- Hoarding and mental rituals (such as praying or repeating words)
- Most people who suffer from OCD also experience fear, anxiety, and depression.
- Repeating certain actions or words.
What Is Esketamine?
Esketamine is a derivative of ketamine, which has been used for years as an anesthetic. Esketamine acts on glutamate receptors in the brain, blocking NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate) receptors and decreasing the activity of glutamate. This action leads to a decrease in mental disorder symptoms, such as intrusive thoughts, compulsive behaviors, and many others.
It is also believed to improve neuronal connections, leading to better information processing and improved cognitive functioning.
Esketamine is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treating treatment-resistant OCD in adults who have tried other medications but haven’t found relief from their symptoms. It is administered as an intranasal spray twice a week over the course of four weeks and should be continued if needed.
What Are The Benefits Of Esketamine For OCD?
Here are some of the benefits of Esketamine OCD.
Esketamine has been shown to reduce anxiety in those with OCD, providing them with a sense of relief from the intrusive thoughts and behaviors that are so common in this condition.
Improved cognitive functioning
By blocking NMDA receptors, esketamine can improve the ability to process information properly and accurately. This can help individuals with OCD better manage their symptoms and make decisions that aren’t influenced by their compulsions.
Decreased impulsive behavior
Studies have found that esketamine decreases impulsive behavior by reducing impulsivity in those with treatment-resistant OCD. This can help individuals control their reactions to situations without being driven by their compulsions or fear.
Helpful In OCD-Related Disorder
Esketamine OCD has been found to be helpful in treating other OCD-related disorders, such as body dysmorphic disorder (BDD). This can help those with BDD find relief from their obsessive thoughts and improve the quality of their lives.
Improve Your Consciousness
Esketamine can also help to improve your consciousness and allow you to have more control over your thoughts. This is especially important for those who struggle with intrusive and repetitive thoughts that interfere with daily life.
Better quality of life
Studies have shown that esketamine is effective in reducing symptoms of OCD. In a 12-week clinical trial of over 500 adults, those who received the drug had significantly fewer intrusive thoughts and compulsive behaviors compared to those who did not receive it. Additionally, these effects were maintained for up to 24 weeks after treatment stopped.
Esketamine also appears to be very safe and well tolerated with few side effects reported.
Side Effect Of Esketamine
Esketamine is generally safe and well tolerated. However, there are some potential side effects that you should be aware of.
- It causes drowsiness and fatigue.
- This can increase blood pressure and heart rate.
- Hallucinations, blurred vision, or disorientation in some people.
- In rare cases, it can lead to a worsening of depression or suicidal thoughts.
- It can cause nausea, dizziness, and headache.
- Esketamine should not be used by people with active alcohol or substance use disorder or those taking other drugs that interact with esketamine, such as ketamine or monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs).
It is also important to note that this drug can help relieve symptoms of OCD. However, it should not be used as a substitute for other forms of therapy and medications.
Can Esketamine Be Used Long Term?
Esketamine is generally used as a short-term treatment. For up to 1 year, it is generally considered safe and effective for those with treatment-resistant OCD. After the one-year mark, it’s typically recommended to talk to your doctor about other long-term treatments that may be beneficial for your specific condition.
Does Esketamine Cause Memory Loss?
Esketamine does not typically cause memory loss. According to five researchers, it actually improves cognitive functions and memory, although these effects typically stop after the treatment ends.
In conclusion, esketamine has been found to be a safe and effective treatment for OCD with few side effects reported. It can reduce anxiety and improve cognitive functioning as well as decrease impulsive behavior.
How Many Esketamine Treatments Do You Need?
For adults it is 84 mg twice a week for four weeks, then it is reduced to 84 mg once in a week for 8 weeks. After this initial 12-week period, treatments may be continued on an as-needed basis. The amount of esketamine and frequency of treatment should be determined by your doctor depending on your individual needs and response to the medication.
Esketamine is a promising treatment for those with treatment-resistant OCD. It can reduce the frequency of intrusive thoughts and compulsive behaviors, as well as improve cognitive functioning. Additionally, it can help those with other related disorders like BDD find relief from their symptoms and lead to a better quality of life.
Although esketamine does have some side effects, these are usually mild and short-lived. If you suffer from OCD, talk to your doctor about whether or not Esketamine may be right for you.
Take care, and don’t forget that you are not alone! OCD is a mental health disorder characterized by obsessions and compulsions. If you have any queries regarding OCD treatment, ERP therapy experienced therapists at OCDMantra can help: Book a trial OCD therapy session