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Intravenous ketamine for rapid treatment of major depressive disorder in the general medical hospital
  1. Siobhan Helen Gee1,2,
  2. Camille Wratten3,
  3. Ruth Cairns3,
  4. Alastair Santhouse4 and
  5. David Taylor1,2
  1. 1Pharmacy Department, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK
  2. 2Institute of Pharmaceutical Science, King's College London, London, UK
  3. 3Department of Psychological Medicine, King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK
  4. 4Department of Psychological Medicine, Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Siobhan Helen Gee; siobhan.gee{at}


Major depressive disorder (MDD) is common in general medical settings, and can usually be treated with conventional oral antidepressants. For some patients, however, oral treatment is refused or not possible, and the untreated symptoms can have a significant impact on the treatment of the acute medical problem. Use of intravenous ketamine has been widely reported in mental health settings for the treatment of MDD. We describe use of intravenous ketamine in a general medical hospital for the treatment of MDD in an 83-year-old male patient who refused food, fluid and medical investigations following a stroke.

  • psychiatry (drugs and medicines)
  • therapeutic indications

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  • Contributors SHG conceived of the presented case report and drafted the manuscript. CW and RC wrote the case. AS and DT contributed to the discussion. All authors reviewed the final manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.