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What is Ketamine?
A) Ketamine is a short-acting "dissociative"
anesthetic due to its ability to separate perception from
sensation. It also has hallucinogenic and painkilling
qualities that seem to affect people in very different
ways. . Ketamine is chemically related to PCP ('Angel
Dust'). Ketamine is occasionally administered to people
but, more commonly, is used by vets for pet surgery. Generally
street K is most often diverted in liquid form from vets'
offices or medical suppliers.
How is Ketamine used?
Special K is prepared by evaporating the liquid from the legitimate
pharmaceutical injectable product and grinding the residue into
a powder. Drying of the liquid has been reported to be accomplished
by placing the liquid on warming trays, pancake griddles, or
cast-iron skillets placed on low heat. More recent reports describe
the use of microwaves to achieve a fast boiling-off of the liquid
to dry crystals. There has been no reported clandestine manufacture
of ketamine (which would be a difficult process). All of the
ketamine encountered by law enforcement to date has been diverted
from licit sources, burglaries of veterinary clinics being the
most frequently reported source.
is usually snorted or swallowed as a powder or injected as a
liquid intramuscularly. Sometimes, it is put on tobacco or marijuana
and smoked. It is distributed as powder in small "personal
use" cocaine-like bottles, ziplock bags, capsules, or paper,
glassine or aluminum 'folds', or as a liquid in small vials
or bottles. Specialized "puff pumpers", small bottles
with a small inhaler screw-on top designed to deliver approx.
40 mg of ketamine crystals, have been sold in "Rave"
clubs. A 10 ml vial of veterinary product containing one gram
of ketamine sells, on average, for $100 on the street. A typical
street package of powder (100 - 200 mg) sells for about $20.
In the past, other drugs were not usually mixed with ketamine,
now however, MDMA, amphetamine, methamphetamine, cocaine, carisoprodol,
and flunitrazepam have been encountered.
as "Special K" or "K" has become a staple
at 'rave' parties. It produces a dose-related progression of
effects from a state of dreamy intoxication to delirium accompanied
by the inability to move, feel pain or remember what has occurred
while under the drug's influence.
What are the effects of Ketamine?
I.M. (intra-muscular injection) Ketamine generally takes 1-5
minutes to take effect. Snorted ketamine takes a little longer
at 5-15 minutes. Depending on how much and how recently one
has eaten, oral ketamine can take between 5 and 30 minutes to
take effect. The primary effects of ketamine last approximately
an 30-45 minutes if injected, 45-60 minutes when snorted, and
1-2 hours if used orally. The Drug Enforcement Administration
reports that the drug can still affect the body for up to 24
What are the side effects of Ketamine?
The use of Ketamine can result in profound physical and mental
problems including delirium, amnesia, impaired motor function
and potentially fatal respiratory problems. Panic, rage and
paranoia may also occur. Some people feel paralyzed by the drug,
unable to speak without slurring, while others either feel sick
or actually throw up. While using Ketamine one is less likely
to feel pain and in turn could end up inflicting injury or harm
to themselves without even knowing it. In addition, one can
be submerged in their hallucinations without realizing that
they are hallucinating. Eating or drinking before taking the
drug can cause vomiting.
regarding the long-term effects of Ketamine is mainly anecdotal.
Flashbacks of experiences and hallucinations while under the
influence of the drug have been reported. There have also been
suggestions that long-term use of Ketamine can damage the memory
and eyesight of the user, as well as reducing attention span.
Frequent use can cause disruptions in consciousness and lead
to neuroses or other mental disorders.
BBC report in May 2000 claimed that medical research had shown
that controlled tests on Ketamine users had revealed impaired
memory and mild schizophrenia several days after taking the
psychological difficulties which seem to come up for those who
use Ketamine regularly are paranoia and egocentrism. There are
many reports of regular users starting to see patterns and coincidences
(synchronicities) in the world around them which seem to indicate
that they are somehow more important or integral to the world
than others. This same sense of the world focusing on the user
can also feed into a sense of paranoia.
A main characteristic of Ketamine is a stupor similar to extreme
drunkenness. This is commonly known as "being in the K-hole."
Can you overdose on Ketamine?
Yes, an overdose of Ketamine will knock you out as if in an
operating room. If
repeatedly taken in large doses, Ketamine can induce unconsciousness
and failure of the cardiovascular system, leading to death.
There are at least seven Ketamine related deaths known nationally.
Is Ketamine addictive?
Yes, Ketamine can cause a tremendous psychological dependence
and may be physically addicting as well. The dissociation from
one's consciousness experienced with Special K (the entrance
to "K-Land") can be highly seductive, and there are
many cases of Ketamine addiction. If used regularly, users of
Special K can quickly build a tolerance to the drugs effects.
Special K is illegal and possession can result in long prison
What are the slang terms used for Ketamine?
Special K, Ketalar, Ketaject, Ketaset, Super-K, "K",
Ket Kat, Cat Valium, Vitamin K
What is the history behind Ketamine?
Abuse of Ketamine (pronounced Kee-ta-meen) goes hand in hand
with gamma hydroxy butyrate (GHB) and MDMA (Ecstasy). Where
you find one, you will likely find the others. All three are
very popular with the RAVE party crowd. Ketamine hcl, a cat
tranquilizer and the most commonly used anesthetic in the Vietnam
War. It was popular in the 70's. Ketamine is a psychedelic anesthetic
classified medically as a dissociative anesthetic, discovered
by Dr. Cal Stevens of Wayne State University in 1961. Heavily
used on the battlefields of Vietnam, it is used today for short-term
surgical procedures in both animals and humans. It is sold only
to hospitals and physicians. Since it does not depress critical
body vitals, it is often used in procedures with burn victims
K has exploded in the past few months onto the suburban drug
scene. In February, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration
warned that use is increasing at teen "rave" parties,
the marathon dances that have spawned a new youth subculture.
Anti-drug czar Barry McCaffrey's office added K to its list
of "emerging drugs" in 1995; the office's latest "pulse
check" of the nation found K "all over." St.
Louis, Mo., Tampa, Fla., and suburban New Jersey have seen a
rash of animal-hospital break-ins by thieves hunting for Ketamine.
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