Ketamine is a dissociative anesthetic used medically for induction and maintenance of anesthesia. It is also used as a treatment for depression, a pain management tool, and as a recreational drug.
Ketamine is a dissociative anesthetic used in human anesthesia and veterinary medicine. Dissociative drugs are hallucinogens that cause a person to feel detached from reality. Much of the ketamine sold on the street has been diverted from veterinarians’ offices. Ketamine’s chemical structure and mechanism of action are similar to those of PCP.
Also known as special K, super K and vitamin k, among other slang terms, ketamine is manufactured as an injectable liquid. In illicit use ketamine is swallowed or evaporated to form a snortable powder. It is odorless and tasteless, so it can be added to beverages without being detected, and it induces amnesia. Because it has been used to commit sexual assaults due to its ability to sedate and incapacitate unsuspecting victims, ketamine is also considered to be a “date rape” drug.
Ketamine can cause dream-like states and hallucinations. People who use the drug report sensations ranging from a pleasant feeling of floating to being separated from their bodies.