Understanding Ketamine Therapy: Insights Post Matthew Perry’s Passing

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Credit Matthew Perry

An autopsy report named the acute effects of ketamine as Perry’s cause of death.

A Los Angeles County coroner’s autopsy report on Friday cited acute effects of ketamine as the cause of death for “Friends” star Matthew Perry.

According to the report, Perry was reportedly on ketamine infusion therapy and took the ketamine infusion a week and a half before his death. However, the medical examiner concluded that ketamine could not have been in his system from this infusion, as ketamine has a half-life of three to four hours or less.

The report also included drowning, coronary artery disease and the effects of buprenorphine as unrelated to the immediate cause of death, ruling Perry’s death an accident.

Buprenorphine is a drug used to treat Opioid Use Disorder (OUD). Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Here’s a look at what ketamine is and how it’s used in medical treatment.

What is ketamine?

Ketamine is a dissociative anesthetic used clinically to induce anesthesia. In recent years, it has also been used as a treatment for treatment-resistant depression, according to State Pearls, an online library published in the National Library of Medicine.

Ketamine has a “potential for recreational abuse,” according to the American Addiction Centers.

What is ketamine therapy?

According to the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), ketamine was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the 1970s as a fast-acting anesthetic.

In recent years, off-label ketamine has been used to treat psychiatric disorders such as depression and PTSD.

Dr. John Crystal, co-director of the Yale Center for Clinical Investigation, “on average, it takes about two months for an antidepressant to produce a reduction in symptoms,” told ABC News’ Eva Pilgrim in Nov. “Ketamine produces similar improvements within 24 hours in many people.”

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Friends star Matthew Perry, who played king of sarcasm Chandler Bing, dies aged 54

Ketamine therapy made headlines in 2021 when former NBA player Lamar Odom spoke on “Good Morning America” ​​about using drug therapy to help fight addiction. “I went to rehab and did a few other things, but ketamine came into my life at the right time,” Odom told ABC News’ Steve Osunsamy.

“I think of ketamine as an intervention that’s part of a holistic treatment,” Crystal said. “Ketamine may be something that can facilitate and enhance the effects of psychotherapy.”

Potential risks of ketamine therapy

According to his autopsy report, his live-in personal assistant was the last person to see him alive that afternoon after Perry returned from playing pickleball. Assistants worked at Perry’s home for several hours and discovered his body at 4 p.m. Responding officers pronounced him dead at 4:17 p.m.

According to his autopsy, no pills, drugs or drugs were found near the pool. He did not have alcohol or drugs such as methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin and fentanyl in his system.

Matthew Perry
Credit Matthew Perry

According to the autopsy report, Perry had been on ketamine infusion therapy, her most recent therapy, for 1 1/2 weeks before her death.

The autopsy report states that he had high levels of ketamine in his blood, and that he likely passed out and then went under the water.

He was reportedly given an infusion of ketamine for depression and anxiety, but the medical examiner wrote that ketamine could not have been in his system at the time of death from the infusion therapy because ketamine has a half-life of 3 to 4 hours or so. is less than Its diet is listed as unknown.

Prescription drugs and loose pills were found at his home, but nothing near the pool where he was found dead, the report said.

The L.A. County Medical Examiner confirmed to ABC News on Oct. 29 that an autopsy was performed, but the cause of death is pending due to toxicology findings.

Perry was best known for his role as Chandler Bing on the hit sitcom Friends, which ran from 1994 to 2004. He also starred in several TV series, including “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip” and films such as “17 Again” and “Fools.” In a hurry.”

But beyond his successes in film and television, Perry said he wants people to do the same. Remember it to help others.

“When I die, I don’t want ‘Friends’ to be the first thing that’s mentioned,” Perry said in an interview on the “Q with Tom Power” podcast in 2022. Be the first person [to help people]. What has been mentioned, and I will spend the rest of my life proving it.”

In her memoir, “Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing,” to be released in 2022, Perry talks about her addiction to alcohol and prescription painkillers after a doctor’s jet ski accident. It started after she was prescribed Vicodin.

Role of ‘high levels of ketamine’ in Matthew Perry’s death

An autopsy, performed the day after his death, describes Perry as a 54-year-old man with a history of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease/emphysema, diabetes. Past drug use – reportedly clean for 19 months; Heavy tobacco user for many years but currently non-smoker. Reportedly on ketamine infusion therapy with the latest therapy a week and a half before death.”

According to the American Addiction Centers, “Ketamine overdose deaths rarely occur if ketamine is the only drug someone takes.”

According to the StatPearls journal at the National Library of Medicine, the lethal dose of ketamine for a 154-pound human is about 5.6 milligrams per pound.

Beyond the risk of death, Dr. John Crystal, co-director of the Yale Center for Clinical Investigation, told Eva Pilgrim in November that ketamine therapy should not be used by people with schizophrenia or psychosis.

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