How Spravato® Differs from Traditional Antidepressants

Dec 21, 2022
How Spravato® Differs from Traditional Antidepressants
When you have depression, you want a treatment that gives you your life back. Though many antidepressants fail, Spravato® works differently for treatment-resistant depression. Read on to learn more about how Spravato differs from other medications.

Depression is a severe mental health disease that significantly affects your life. You may experience extreme sadness, overwhelming fatigue, and lose interest in things you used to love.

If you're depressed, antidepressant medications help to even out the chemicals in your brain, which usually eliminates most of your symptoms. But what if traditional antidepressants don't work for you?

Spravato® is a different helpful medication when you haven't been successful with other antidepressants. The team at Pacific Phoenix TMS understands depression and offers Spravato when you need it most.

Dr. Elia Gonzalez-Rodriguez is our psychiatrist who is here to help you every step of the way in your depression treatment.

Understanding Spravato®

Spravato is a nasal spray that contains a drug known as esketamine. You've probably heard of ketamine, a drug often used for sedation or anesthesia. Esketamine is similar to ketamine and works quickly to diffuse depression symptoms.

Suppose you're having suicidal thoughts or you experience major depressive disorder but are getting no relief from antidepressants. In that case, Dr. Gonzalez-Rodriguez offers Spravato as a treatment option. The FDA has approved Spravato for depression that's severe and hasn't been treatable through other means.

Spravato is a highly potent medication. Dr. Gonzalez-Rodriguez can only administer it in one of her offices while you're under direct supervision. Dr. Gonzalez-Rodriguez must thoroughly evaluate you and your symptoms before prescribing this medication.

You'll give yourself three sprays of Spravato in your nose, each spaced out five minutes from the previous spray. After the third dose, we allow you to rest while we monitor you for any severe side effects. You'll need someone to drive you home after treatment.

How is Spravato different?

Spravato is much different from other antidepressant medications because it works extremely fast to relieve major depressive symptoms and suicidal ideations.

Typical antidepressant medications take weeks to take effect as they change the chemicals in your brain. If you have severe depression, you don't have time to wait weeks for symptom relief.

Dr. Gonzalez-Rodriguez provides Spravato when you've tried other medications for major depressive disorder without any relief from your symptoms. Spravato allows you to relieve your symptoms quickly and affects your brain immediately.

Dr. Gonzalez-Rodriquez typically uses Spravato in conjunction with another depression medication. The Spravato provides you with symptom relief while the other medication starts to take effect on your brain to relieve depression symptoms.

Unlike other medications, you can't take Spravato at home. The FDA considers it a controlled substance because of its hallucinogenic effects, which means we must administer it at one of our offices while you're in our care.

Are there any side effects?

Spravato is a derivative of ketamine, so it has similar side effects. However, these effects usually go away within a few hours after drug administration. Some of the significant side effects associated with Spravato include:

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Dissociative symptoms
  • Hand and feet numbness
  • Unclear thinking
  • Anxiety
  • Vertigo

Spravato may also increase your blood pressure for a short period. These side effects are why Dr. Gonzalez-Rodriguez monitors you during and after the Spravato administration.

You'll typically get over any adverse effects a few hours to a few days after you've received Spravato. If any adverse effects persist longer or reach alarming levels, please inform Pacific Phoenix TMS after calling 911 or going to your nearest emergency room.

The benefits of Spravato usually outweigh the side effects. If you have treatment-resistant depression, Spravato could be an excellent option for you.

To find out if Spravato is a treatment option for you, call the Pacific Phoenix TMS team today at one of our convenient offices in Salmon Creek or Vancouver, Washington. You may also request an appointment on the website.