IV Ketamine Treatments | San Francisco Bay Area | West PortalWavemaker2022-10-11T18:21:40+00:00
IV Ketamine Treatments
Integrating guided ketamine treatments into your care plan to ease the symptoms of your chronic conditions.
Our CORE TREATMENT PROGRAM & TIMELINE
Many patients see reductions in depression and anxiety symptoms immediately after their initial 3 ketamine treatments delivered over the course of 2 weeks. Patients may choose to receive follow-up sessions at a decreasing frequency while their symptoms recede.
A licensed therapist and experienced psychedelic therapy guide will be available to all patients in our ketamine program for preparation, integration, and to sit in on ketamine infusions.
All patients in our IV ketamine programs will receive constant care and personal interaction with our highly experienced and specialized nurse during their infusions. Some people may choose to have our licensed therapist and psychedelic therapy guide present during the ketamine infusions as well. See below for more about our integrative Core Treatment Program for chronic conditions.
core treatment program
PRE-TREATMENT ASSESSMENT and PRESCRIBING CONSULTATION
Ketamine treatment at our office may be a good option as part of your holistic treatment. Based on your personal health profile and other steps you are taking towards recovery, Dr. Grieder, Dr. Toohey, Dr. Armstrong, and our team can help you decide whether ketamine is a good treatment option for you.
core treatment program
PREPARING FOR YOUR TREATMENT: PREPARATION and INTENTION-SETTING SESSION
Your guide, a licensed therapist, will work with you to set goals for your treatment, help you understand what to expect, answer any questions, and serve as another ally in your healing journey. We also discuss intentions that you have for your infusions. Usually this session occurs within one week prior to first ketamine session.
core treatment program
On the day of your treatment, our highly experienced ketamine infusion nurse and your guide will introduce you to the space, answer your questions, and help you feel comfortable. Your nurse will administer the ketamine, and your nurse and your guide will sit with you as you enter an altered mental state which many experience as an unusual but generally pleasant, emotionally open state. Your nurse and your guide will closely follow your response during your journey and attend to you as needed. Once the effects of the medication wear off, your nurse and your guide will stay with you as you begin reflecting on your experience.
It is important to arrange for a ride from these infusions as it will not be safe to drive for several hours after your ketamine infusion.
Our typical program includes three ketamine treatment sessions within a 2-week period.
core treatment program
REFLECTION and INTEGRATION SESSION
A few days after your treatment, you will meet with your guide to reflect on and integrate the experiences and insights from your ketamine session. You will be offered integration sessions following each ketamine session. Integration sessions with your guide are usually scheduled within 1-7 days following each ketamine session.
Each patient’s experience of ketamine is unique and frequently includes new thought patterns and emotions. Sometimes old thought patterns and emotions resurface which allows for an opportunity to understand them better and work with them more effectively. These new patterns, perspectives, insights, and increased neural plasticity will feed back into your healing journey and ongoing collaboration with Dr. Grieder, Dr. Armstrong, and other care providers you may have.
Neuroplasticity is the brain’s ability to form and reorganize synaptic connections. Encouraging neuroplasticity is especially important in response to injury or illness.
Ketamine is a prescription medication that has been safely used as an anesthetic since 1970. A growing body of research supports off-label use of clinically administered ketamine to relieve symptoms of anxiety, depression, and chronic pain. When ketamine works for patients, they often experience relief from symptoms immediately after 1 to 3 treatments which can be sustained with periodic treatments and without the need for daily medications.
While the exact mechanisms of ketamine’s efficacy are still being researched, we understand that it stimulates the brain’s neuroplasticity, helping the lost neural connections regenerate.
By restoring healthy brain function, ketamine treatment supports the body’s immune system in recovering from the underlying medical condition.
Further, while feelings and beliefs you have around your chronic conditions are not its cause, they do play an important role in navigating your healing process. The new neural patterns created by ketamine may help you gain new perspectives on the relationship with your body, break through emotional barriers, and establish healthier thinking patterns and healthier action patterns.
HELPING YOUR BRAIN form NEW CONNECTIONS
Exposure to intense stress — such as dealing with a chronic medical condition — causes alteration of connections between neurons in our brain.
These synaptic connections are crucial to the brain’s regulation of physical processes and mental, emotional, and behavioral states. This deterioration can be one of the contributors to symptoms such as brain fog, chronic fatigue, anxiety, depression, and stress response activation. Such dysfunctions have been hypothesized as negatively affecting other body systems such as the immune system.
DR. GRIEDER and DR. ARMSTRONG on KETAMINE for CHRONIC CARE
Over the last several decades, scientific research has illuminated the intrinsic connections between the mind and the body.
We now know that processes that take place in the immune system and the gut have a powerful effect on the neurophysiology of the brain. At the same time, mental health symptoms like stress, anxiety, and depression can weaken our immune system.
This means that the emotional toll of stress, anxiety and depression does not just impact mental well-being — it also physically impacts the body’s ability to respond to other medical conditions.
Dr. Grieder’s and Dr. Armstrong’s collaborative, holistic approach to chronic care recognizes the importance of addressing the feedback cycle between physical and mental distress. They have found that the use of ketamine — a safe medication used off-label to treat various mental health disorders — helps the brain recover from the physical and psychological impact of stress, anxiety, and depression that often accompany chronic medical conditions.
Integrating ketamine treatments into your holistic care program can makes your brain a powerful ally in combating your physical ailments, and gives you the mental space and clarity to better navigate your path to recovery.
We recently underwent a research program internal to San Francisco Preventative Medicine, where we interviewed patients with chronic conditions. We asked about their history and experiences, the impact on their relationships, and the varying treatment plans they’ve tried, including experiences with alternative therapies.
One patient had dealt with years of severe depression as a result of her chronic Lyme disease. When asked about her in-clinic treatment with ketamine, she said:
“It was like waking up from the depression. I could breathe again. The suicidal thoughts went away and it was like I was not carrying a weight anymore.”
We can’t guarantee everyone’s results will be this profound, but in our clinic, we have seen some life changing results from ketamine treatments.
To learn more, please schedule consultation. We’ll schedule some time to determine, together, if ketamine treatment is a good treatment option for you.
Ketamine increases neural connectivity and neuroplasticity by affecting multiple receptors and pathways in the brain and body. One of the key pathways it affects is the amino acid, glutamate, pathway. Glutamate plays a central role in both the normal and abnormal functioning of the central nervous system, and a growing body of evidence points to the role of glutamate in mediating the brain’s response to stress and the formation of traumatic memories. Ketamine is an N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist, so it binds to the NMDA receptor protein and blocks glutamate from attaching to cell membranes.
An increasing level of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor hypofunction within the brain is associated with memory and learning impairments, with psychosis, and with excitotoxic brain injury. Ketamine blocks at the NmethylDaspartate (NMDA) site and has rapid action in controlling symptoms of depression. Ketamine also acts on the mTOR pathway (a central regulator of metabolism and physiology), the AMPA receptor (which mediates fast synaptic transmission in the central nervous system) and the brain’s opioid receptors (which control pain, reward and addictive behavior).
Research has shown that, unlike antidepressant medications which typically require several weeks to take effect, ketamine can be rapidly effective, in a few days or even hours. Ketamine can have long lasting effects. Most people require multiple treatments.
380 West Portal
Avenue, Suite C,
San Francisco, CA 94127
IV Ketamine Therapy
Dr. Mischa Grieder, ND
Early on in Dr. Grieder’s clinical career he developed an interest in understanding how the neurobiology of the brain is affected by chronic disease, and how it in turn influences the process of disease and healing. It was in 2010 when he began to administer IV ketamine to patients for the purpose of treating depression and anxiety, with results that were often immediate and remarkable. Some patients found the treatment helpful not only for their mood, but it appeared to improve their overall outlook and path to recovery of their chronic illness as well.
After 12 years of experience in administering ketamine and having trained under Dr. Phil Wolfson, PhD, Dr. Grieder is now collaborating with Dr. Jessica Armstrong, PhD, an experienced psychologist in trauma informed therapies. Together they are developing clinical programs that apply ketamine for neuroplasticity to treat complex chronic disease and mental health.
Dr. Jessica L. Armstrong, Ph.D.
My work as a therapist has taught me that we all have an inner healing wisdom. Difficult experiences in our lives may leave us disconnected from this part of ourselves, but it cannot be damaged or destroyed. IV ketamine infusions may strengthen contact with one’s inner healer, building self-trust and competence in recovery from trauma and chronic medical conditions. I have seen this treatment impact patients’ experiences of safety and comfort in their bodies, and open up fresh ways of thinking, feeling and perceiving. Ketamine may help catalyze the integration of memories, sensations, and parts of self. This can lead to feeling more whole and embodied, with greater awareness of changes that need to be made to support this embodied wholeness. This treatment can provide an opportunity for patients to reorient their lives in service of what is truly important to them, moving from survival mode into living fully. Joining with Dr. Grieder at SFPMG has allowed me to guide patients through this integrated treatment safely and comprehensively, while honoring the connection between body, mind, and spirit.
Jim Spily, IV Nurse
Jim Spily is an exceptional registered nurse with over 15 years of experience. Jim’s attention to detail and expertise in functional medicine is palpable with everyone who works with him. Trained in ketamine assisted therapy by Polaris Insight Center and with years of experience in providing IV ketamine, Jim harbors a safe space for patients during the sessions, while illuminating the path for healing. His peaceful and calm nature makes patients feel at home and adds to the success of each session.
In some cases, we are able to offer treatment approaches using ketamine that differ from our Core Program. Please call us to discuss one of the options below if you think it may be a good fit. You may also be interested in scheduling a consultation with our licensed therapist who can help you determine the best approach to fit your needs.
Acute Emergency Ketamine Program
Currently for established patients only. Coming soon to open to new patients.
In some situations, it may be appropriate to consider ketamine infusions, such as in acute situations (i.e., severe psychiatric episode, suicidal ideation) where treatment is necessary immediately. Please call us if you think this could be a good option for you. In some cases we are able to arrange to provide treatment within 48 hours, or to help guide patients to providers they can see immediately.
If you are in need of immediate services, please call 9-1-1 or go to your nearest emergency room. You may also call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-8255
Non-Emergency Standalone Treatment for Mental Health with and without Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP)
You may be interested in ketamine treatment for anxiety, depression, and mental health conditions that are not driven by chronic medical conditions. Call us if you are interested in learning whether ketamine infusions may be a good fit for your needs. You will have the option to choose to work with our guide, or to choose to receive infusions without a guide.
Non-Emergency Standalone Treatment for Chronic Medical Condition with and without KAP
You may be interested in ketamine treatment for a primary medical condition (chronic pain, insomnia, brain fog, fatigue) that are not driven by chronic mental health conditions. Call us if you are interested in learning whether ketamine infusions may be a good fit for your needs. You will have the option to choose to work with our guide, or to choose to receive infusions without a guide.
Personal Development Program
While ketamine and other psychedelic medicines are showing promising results for treating both acute and chronic medical and mental health conditions, there is evidence that they can offer other benefits to personal growth and development. You may be interested in finding out more about what ketamine can offer your development as a human being or in your spiritual practices. Please call us if you would like to discuss options to incorporate ketamine treatment as part of your personal development program. You will have the option to choose to work with our guide, or to choose to receive infusions without a guide.
Non-Ordinary States of Consciousness, including those attained by psychedelic medicines, have been helpful in working with couples. Currently we are able to offer guided ketamine journeys for couples and/or two individuals who are interested in journeying together simultaneously. Call us if you would like to know more about our offerings for simultaneous journeys.