What is the difference between ketamine infusion therapy and ketamine lozenges?
The difference between ketamine infusion therapy and treatment with ketamine lozenges is simply the method of delivery - ketamine infusions are administered intravenously (IV) or intramuscularly (IM), while ketamine lozenges are administered orally/sublingually (under the tongue).
Both methods can be therapeutically beneficial and highly effective in treating various mental health conditions, but there are some key differences between them that may make individuals better suited to one over the other.
IV or IM ketamine infusions are delivered in-person at specialized clinics, due to the higher level of clinical supervision required during a session. This route of administration has a higher bioavailability (the proportion of the drug which actually enters the bloodstream and is able to exert an active effect) than the oral or sublingual routes, allowing for higher doses and the potential for a higher degree of dissociation/ sedation to be achieved. Ketamine infusions tend to be the most expensive ketamine treatment option, costing an average of $400-$1200 per session, with the majority of treatment protocols entailing multiple sessions.
Ketamine lozenges, like those used at Wondermed, are small lozenges that dissolve in the mouth. Compared with IV or IM ketamine, oral dosing is more convenient, easier to self-administer, and less invasive. It can also be a more affordable and cost-effective option. When ketamine is delivered orally or sublingually, not all of it reaches the bloodstream, producing more mild to moderate levels of dissociation compared to ketamine infusions. Some patients prefer treatment with the higher, more consciousness-altering doses used in ketamine infusion therapy, while other patients find the gentler effects of lower oral/sublingual doses (which are often compared to a state of deep relaxation/ meditation) more beneficial.