In a rare twist of caution and complete disregard for pharmaceutical company interests, the FDA approved a close cousin of a club drug from the 80s and 90s, ketamine, (also known as Special K) to treat depression.
Ketamine has been used widely for fifty years as a safer alternative to PCP in operating rooms, on the battlefield, and in pediatric clinics. When it was discovered to produce antidepressant effects, researchers rolled up their sleeves, and snorted some to be certain. Sure enough, the rumors were true.
However, extreme reactions of ketamine range from hallucinations and out of body experiences to the potential for psychotic episodes in those who may be prone.
A new drug called esketamine, derived from the ketamine molecule, is said to share the same potential side effects, but less so, say researchers who do not fully understand how it works.
But the FDA has not let that stop them. They’re eager to let the paying public complete their clinical trials for them.
The FDA opted to forgo a second short-term trial, after esketamine failed two trials; trials that showed the new drug did not out perform a placebo.
“It’s much cheaper for us if we let regular people pay for something that isn’t well understood. That way we can see the results on unsuspecting idiots. Otherwise, we have to go through a whole long scientific process and stuff, and nobody really knows what that is anyway.”
Defenders of this conscientious decision to skip a more thorough study of the effects of esketamine before hitting the market insist the decision has nothing to do with the global $12 Billion antidepressant industry and the cash that pharmaceutical companies can make at people’s expense.
Many mental health professionals are behind the release of esketamine.
To administer esketamine, one sprays it up one’s nose. A ghastly endeavor; one to be repelled.
“There is absolutely no cause for alarm. This drug will certainly not be abused in any way. People simply won’t go to the trouble to snort something up their nose to alter their experience,” said an anonymous pharmaceutical rep.
“It’s a win-win for us,” said all of the predatory pharmaceutical CEOs in unison as the FDA stood behind them clapping and spraying them with Champage. “Call us on our yachts. Beelzebub is about to sail.”