4 Misunderstandings About Spravato

The treatment of depression has undergone radical changes through the centuries. People have practiced trepanning (we advise against eating if you look it up), the theory of the four humors, electroconvulsive therapy, and now we are able to take advantage of such modern options as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and drugs like Spravato. We’ve recently added Spravato to our offerings and want to share more information about it. Check out more about Spravato at this link, this link, and this link.

It’s understandable that a brand-new antidepressant will raise questions and concerns. Today, we want to debunk four misunderstandings about Spravato.

1. Spravato is just a brand-new “experimental” or “trial” drug that can’t be taken seriously. That is false. Spravato was approved by the FDA in 2019, and the FDA’s approval process is strenuous. Much study must be done before any drug, method, or device can gain traction. Many treatment options we have today had to be altered multiple times before getting approval. Check out more information on the

FDA’s approval of Spravato at this link.

  1. Spravato is addictive. That is false. Patients must qualify for Spravato first and do not get to take the drug home. A carefully measured dose is administered in a closely monitored setting with a medical professional present.
  2. Spravato is just ketamine with another name. That is false. Small changes in chemical composition can render the effect of one drug radically different from another. It is true that Spravato is based on ketamine, with the active ingredient being esketamine, a derivative. Using only a portion of the ketamine molecule means that the effects are more targeted at relieving depressive disorders and that less of the drug is needed.
  3. The side effects of Spravato are dangerous and long-lasting. That is false. These are some possible side effects of Spravato:

− Feeling sleepy (sedation)

− Confusion

− Nausea

  Increased blood pressure

Another reason that Spravato is taken in the presence of a medical professional is to watch for side effects. Only about 7% of people who have taken Spravato stopped because the side effects were not worth the benefit. The drug has been made into a nasal spray for ease of administration and to show effect quickly. This means that side effects, if any, show themselves quickly as well.

If your depression hasn’t responded well to treatment, let’s check out your options. Talk to us on our

website anytime or call (585) 442-6960.