Treatment-resistant depression (TRD) is a condition that affects millions of people worldwide. Despite the availability of antidepressant medications, approximately one-third of patients who have been diagnosed with depression suffer from TRD and fail to respond to traditional oral medications alone. Fortunately, Spravato brings newfound hope to patients who have failed to get relief from their depression symptoms. With its fast-acting effects, it is a promising breakthrough in treating TRD when combined with your oral medication regimen.
At Sulcata Psychiatry, we understand that TRD can be a challenging and frustrating condition to live with. Our providers specialize in helping patients find the right treatment plan for their needs, and are committed to staying up-to-date with the newest treatment options, like Spravato, to provide our patients with hope and relief.
If you would like more information or are ready to schedule your Spravato evaluation, call the office today or request an appointment online.
What is Spravato?
Spravato, also known as Eesketamine, is a nasal spray medication that works by altering the levels of a neurotransmitter called Glutamate in the brain. It is the first and only FDA-approved medicine for TRD in adults who have failed at least two other antidepressants. The drug has been found to be effective in improving symptoms of depression within just hours of the first dose.
Unlike traditional antidepressants, which can take weeks or even months to show any results, Spravato works quickly to deliver relief to patients suffering from TRD. In clinical trials, patients saw significant improvement in their symptoms after just four weeks of treatment.
In contrast to traditional IV Ketamine infusions, Spravato is not known to have long term cognitive or memory side effects. Furthermore, Ketamine infusions are considered "off-label" for depression at this time, meaning they are not approved by the FDA for treating depression, and therefore are not usually covered by insurance. If our providers feel that Spravato is a good fit for you, we are able to get it approved by many insurance companies and start treatments within a week, so you can get relief from your depression quickly.
What do Spravato Treatments look like?
Our treatment rooms at Sulcata Psychiatry are relaxing and comfortable, and patients are encouraged to meditate, listen to music or guided relaxation, or pair their treatment with therapy sessions to maximize the benefits of Spravato. The medication is administered via nasal spray in-office under the supervision of a healthcare professional. Patients are required to remain in the treatment room for 2 hours post-administration for monitoring and regular vital sign collection. Some patients choose to pair therapy with their visit to maximize results, as Spravato helps soften many of the defense mechanisms that can make therapy more difficult.
Spravato treatments are scheduled for twice a week for the first month, then weekly for at least 4 weeks afterwards. After the first 8 weeks of treatments, we adjust the Spravato frequency based on treatment response.
What are the risks of Spravato?
It is important to note that Spravato is not for everyone. Patients with a history of addiction or abuse, a history of psychosis, as well as those with severe liver or blood vessel problems, may not be eligible for this treatment. Hence, it's crucial to discuss all medical history with your Sulcata Psychiatry provider to determine if Spravato is the right option for you.
The primary side effects when undergoing Spravato treatments are sedation, dizziness, and dissociation, which is a feeling of detachment from reality, disconnected to your emotions, feeling out of body, or feeling "drunk." These feelings generally resolve by the time you leave the office, but it is important to note that you are not allowed to drive yourself home afterwards, so transportation must be coordinated from office.
Spravato can also cause nausea or vomiting after administration. We ask that you do not eat for 2 hours prior to your treatment. We can provide anti-nausea medication in-office if needed, but the majority of our patients do not experience any discomfort.
Spravato may cause a transient increase in blood pressure around 40 minutes after administration. Because of this, our staff monitors vital signs regularly throughout the treatment monitoring period, although blood pressure usually returns to normal on its own well before the 2 hour treatment period is over.