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Dr. Quang Henderson is the co-founder & medical director for MindScape Ketamine & Infusion Therapy. Dr. Henderson is a licensed board-certified emergency physician with over 20 years of experience in utilizing ketamine and has helped push ketamine treatments for depression in the Houston area. IV Ketamine has been useful for the past 15 years for numerous mood disorders; major depression, anxiety, OCD, PTSD, and individuals with chronic migraines/pain. Tianna Hall, an acclaimed Grammy recognized jazz vocalist in Houston, TX, tells her story on how Ketamine has helped her depression and her time coming to MindScape Ketamine & Infusion Therapy.
Hello. My name is Dr. Quang Henderson. I’m the co-founder & medical director for MindScape Ketamine & Infusion Therapy. IV Ketamine has been used for the last 15 years for various mood disorders and has been resistant to your normal medication that people have been utilizing for the last 30 years. What I mean by that is for major depression, anxiety, OCD, PTSD and even for individuals that have chronic migraines and chronic pain itself.
(Tianna) My name is Tiana Hall, I am a jazz vocalist here in the Houston area and I’ve been a patient here at MindScape since they first opened.
What they determine is that 30% of people actually become resistant to their current medication, so whenever someone takes their medication for depression, you hear about SSRIS or serotonin inhibitors. You have certain neurotransmitters in your brain (serotonin, dopamine, epinephrine) and people take medication to try to make those neurotransmitters more readily available. So how Ketamine works is it actually works with the most common neurotransmitter in the brain called glutamate. So by allowing glutamate to be more readily available, it decreases someone’s depression. It’s shown to be effective to 70% of people even after their first treatment.
(Tianna) I’ve been a lifelong sufferer of depression since the onset of puberty, and as such, I’ve also been medicated for depression with SSRIs my entire life (since I was 13 years old.) And because of that, I have been through all of the traditional methods medication-wise for treatment of depression. I’ve gotten to the point where they were becoming effective for me.
I would probably say 80% of our clients that do come in for IV Ketamine visit us for major depression. Again, for those individuals who have been on medication for such a long period of time don’t always like the side effects of it. Or they’ve been in therapy and they can’t get over that last hump or that last hurdle. So what we have found with IV Ketamine is that it allows them to get past that hurdle to where they were either able to receive therapy much better and are more receptive to it or they have been able to lessen the dosing of their antidepressants which in turn lessens their side effects.
(Tianna) When I keep seeing all of these incredible studies on the treatment of depression and anxiety, I kept thinking, Well maybe this might be what I need to pursue. So when I saw that there was a clinic opening in Houston, I already had been researching options for me to go out of state. Because I was at the end of my rope and I didn’t know what else I could possibly do to find some relief.
If a client decides that he or she wants to come in for a treatment, we obviously schedule you, you come in, and we put you in a private client room. Then I have my nurse or myself start an IV on you which we will utilize obviously for the infusion of ketamine. We hook you up to card monitors because safety is paramount to us here at MindScape Ketamine. So we hook it up to measure your blood pressure, your heart rate, and how you are reacting during the 40-minute infusion time. The dosing is based upon your weight so we start off at .5 milligram per kilo and then we infuse that over 40 minutes or with a computerized syringe. The pump measures and delivers the dosing that’s precise for you and then during that time period the nurse will come in every 15 minutes to revitalize you. That means check your vitals to see how you are doing. Until the completion of your IV Ketamine treatment, the great thing during this whole time period is that you never lose consciousness. You are fully aware of where you are and you’re able to speak. So in that regard, it’s a very safe treatment.
We started this ketamine clinic due to the fact that it affected one of my family members that are close to us and we found that IV ketamine actually helped her to where it was mitigating her suicidal thoughts. It was profound for us and so for me, it was like there is something that works for people and we need to make sure that we put it out there and let people know publicly that it really works. Now having said that we obviously found that it was a local application and so why not create an environment where it can be serene and very zen-like and peaceful, almost spa-like.
(Tianna) That’s what we are trying to create here for visitors; It’s an escape and in every sense of the word—not just chemically and medically—as it’s like going into a high-end spa. So you walk in and your sensory input is automatically calmed. For me personally and everyone else’s experience form what I understand is very different but mine has been remarkable, in the sense that with my first treatment I made the remark that it felt like I’d been walking around without a hundred pounds of bricks on my chest. I didn’t even know I was until someone took the IV off me and I came out of the infusion and was like, “Oh, is this what normal feels like?” It had been so long since I’d had that sense of relief that I’d completely forgotten what it felt like anymore. I think with the relief that I’ve gotten, it saved my life.
(Tianna) I think it would be good for a lot of other people to do the first couple of sessions as you typically do them closely together. As your brain starts to adjust to the treatment, you don’t need as many and it serves a long-term effect. I’ve had the great results and have to come in for boosters every once in a while but it’s been months now and when I start to feel things affecting me, my medication or if I start to have a real low swing of depression, then I’ll make an appointment and come by and this will work again for a long time. I’ve been able to tackle some things that have given me anxiety my entire life that I didn’t think I would ever be able to tackle. I struggle a great deal with social anxiety and I used to be morbidly obese. I lost 175 pounds now and while I am not that woman anymore aesthetically, I will always have body dysmorphia.
(Tianna) I will always feel like I am not that woman I used to be and that’s been a remarkable change for me to be able to embrace my aesthetic in my current form. I have to attribute that to the fact that my anxiety is so much more under control, I’ve also had other friends and colleagues come in for treatment of OCD, depression, anxiety, and the list goes on and on.
(Tianna) Dr. Henderson is an incredible person and he and his wife both have been such good people and good friends of mine. They’re kind and considerate and throughout my treatment here, every single consideration has been put in place to make sure that I’m always as comfortable as I can possibly be. I’ve never had that sort of compassion put into my treatment before and having that sort of consideration with your doctor is really lovely to you.