Unlike most of these other drugs, there are currently human and animal medical uses for ketamine. This drug used to be more widely used as a human anesthetic but the severe agitation and hallucinations that often resulted caused its use to be restricted to very limited circumstances. Ketamine is diverted from legitimate uses or can be purchased online from overseas sources. It is abused in clubs or in isolation.
At different dosages, ketamine creates drastically different effects, ranging from euphoria to complete dissociation from one’s thoughts, body or identity. A person reaching this state, called the “k-hole,” will be completely unable to look after his own well-being.
The Health Risks of Ketamine
Ketamine is very harsh on a person’s bladder. A heavy abuser very often suffers pain during urination and has blood in his urine. He may painfully pass blood clots as well. His bladder may become hard and scarred and he may be forced to find a bathroom every 15 minutes or so. Many people have needed surgery to repair their bladders or had their bladders removed as they could not be repaired.
When bladders become damaged, urine can become unable to pass from the kidneys into the bladder. This backup of urine can cause damage to the kidneys, all the way to kidney failure.
Bladder and kidney damage is even more likely when ketamine is combined with Ecstasy as is so often done in Asia.
Because ketamine is an anesthetic, it is quite possible for a person to hurt himself and not be aware of it and not seek medical assistance.
A UK study done in 2009 showed that ketamine users who performed memory and mental ability tests a year apart suffered a deterioration of mental ability and memory in that year. Tests done to find traces of drugs in their hair showed that these ketamine users doubled their consumption in this year, supporting the belief that this is indeed an addictive drug.
At higher doses, ketamine is a depressant of the heart and respiratory functions. Especially if it is mixed with another depressant like alcohol, opiate or benzodiazepines, it can cause a person to stop breathing.