Growth and development happens at a rapid pace as a young child into the teens. Drug abuse during this sensitive developmental time can have a significant lasting impact on the brain and body. The brain is very vulnerable during not only the teen years but well into young adulthood (early 20s). Substance abuse problems are likely to happen before a teen reaches the age of 18 but continue long into adulthood without the right support. New abuses for Ketamine have shed a disturbing light on the dangers of this street drug and its abuse among teens.
Recreational use of the drug Ketamine can be quite dangerous. Used as an animal tranquilizer and anesthetic used during operations and medical procedures, Ketamine also goes by the names K, special K, vitamin K and cat valium.
Risks of Ketamine Abuse
Scientists at the University of York (United Kingdom) discovered a potential hazard for individuals who abused ketamine. The Department of Biology scientists discovered Ketamine can having damaging effects to the lining of the bladder which enables urine to seep into underlying tissues. Inflammation, extreme pain and bladder removal (cystectomy) are probable risks associated with use.
A cystectomy case was reviewed in regards to the study of epithelial cells which line hollow organs and help protect or enclose them around the bladder. Epithelial cells which lined the individual’s bladder were almost completely gone, having been killed and dumped into the urine. As a result, it was discovered ketamine had detrimental effects on the bladder due to direct contact with urine rather than a systemic change in the body. It was determined that direct contact with urinary ketamine creates significant bladder damage. Current research is being conducted on uses of ketamine for severe depression but more research is needed on the effects on a person’s bladder prior to use as an anti-depressant.
Long-Term Effects of Ketamine
These new abuses for ketamine on a long term basis can have other detrimental effects on the mind and body in addition to possible bladder issues. Some of the following can occur in individuals who use ketamine:
- Impaired learning ability and memory
- Potentially fatal respiratory problems
- Urinary tract dysfunction
In some rare instances, ketamine may also cause a person to black out or become unable to move (as if the individual were dead). The drug may cause a blackout while the person can still move which makes the individual vulnerable to accidents or assault.
In spite of these dangers, people still use ketamine recreationally for its hallucinogenic properties, the short and long term consequences of use can wreak havoc on a person’s mind and body. The risk of suicide is higher with individuals who use ketamine recreationally, outside the scope of a doctor’s prescription. If an individual who uses ketamine needs help to quit, there are resources available to support treatment and recovery from ketamine abuse.
Hired Power provides resources and support for individuals with addiction. If you or a loved one need help with drug or substance abuse, call us at 800-910-9299 for more information.