Ketamine for COVID-19: Could Ketamine Interrupt Inflammation & Alleviate COVID-19 Symptoms?


These days, a lot of controversy swirls around proposed treatments for Covid-19. Politicization of the pandemic has clouded our ability to evaluate information and too myopic of a focus has left unintended consequences outside the frame. Certain drugs that may work against Covid-19 are gaining widespread coverage while others are drowned out by bloated media speculation. Ketamine and naltrexone are notable examples.

Both developed in the 1960s, ketamine was first used to start anesthesia while low-doses of naltrexone were used to reduce pain and inflammation in multiple sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, fibromyalgia and other conditions. Now, working in tandem, researchers have launched a study investigating the drugs’ ability to lessen the severity of Covid-19 symptoms.

Operation SINK

Conducted by Beaumont Health and approved by the FDA, the “Study of Immunomodulation using Naltrexone and Ketamine for Covid-19” or simply “SINK COVID-19” is a randomized study for adult patients that hopes to intervene making use of easily available and affordable medications.

Dr. Matthew Sims, director, Infectious Disease Research, Beaumont Health and study principal investigator impresses the importance of new treatments that halt the virus from progressing to a point where ICU care is necessary. Dr. Annas Aljassem, study co-investigator champions the value of a two-pronged approach. Proposed as immunomodulators, both drugs would serve as complements to existing treatment strategies. 

Research is Ongoing

Despite the study’s promising hypothesis, it must be emphasized that as of the time of writing neither naltrexone nor ketamine are available to treat Covid-19. Research is ongoing and must yet pass significant hurdles before approval may be granted. Nonetheless, it wouldn’t be the first time ketamine has demonstrated proven effectiveness against a life-threatening disease.

Ketamine for Severe Depression

Tragically, intentional self-harm is number ten on the list of leading causes of death in the USA. Often, prolonged struggles with mental health provoked by treatment-resistant conditions contribute to a person’s decision to end their life. In studies by some of the world’s leading research programs, ketamine has demonstrated extraordinary potential as an intervention in such instances.

However proven ketamine’s effectiveness at treating mental health afflictions may be, it would be irresponsible to get ahead of ourselves in touting its potential to assist against Covid-19. This said, initial results are promising and in times like these, every glimmer of hope helps. 

ketamine for depression

Contact Ketamine Greater Boston

Our Boston area ketamine clinic is one of the most trusted in the country. We offer ketamine infusions and Spravato™ (esketamine) nasal spray for the treatment of depression, anxiety, PTSD and other psychiatric conditions. Operated by one of the Northeast’s leading psychiatrists, our team is uniquely equipped to treat patients who need compassionate yet effective care. Contact us using the brief form below to learn more about our clinics and how we can help you or a loved one receive the care they need.