Ketamine-Assisted Therapy (KAT)

Plum Spring Clinic offers Ketamine-Assisted Therapy (KAT) as an integrated component of our holistic treatment programs.

Many studies suggest that careful preparation, attended experiencing, and supported processing of the ketamine-assisted therapy ‘journey’ can result in profound insights.  Additionally, this treatment can also be a unique and powerful tool in the resolution of trauma. We offer the ketamine experience, attended by a physician or coach, as an element of a broader ‘envelope’ of skilled support for healing traumatic stress.

Ketamine-Assisted Therapy can be used to treat:

  • anxiety
  • chronic stress
  • trauma
  • treatment resistant depression (TRD)
  • and many other afflictions.

In our experience, unresolved trauma is a major factor underlying the complex illnesses suffered by the majority of our patients. Many have not responded to conventional medical therapy. Ultimately, ketamine-assisted therapy has the capacity to induce a non-ordinary state of consciousness that can safely reach the roots of trauma. This integrated approach can open the psyche to the work of releasing or transforming the trauma. We know that this work can alter the core physiological imbalances that have resulted from chronic stress, enabling the body and mind to heal.

The Plum Spring Clinic Ketamine-Assisted Therapy protocol includes:

  • a medical evaluation by Dr. Sharp or Dr. Withrow to ensure you qualify for use of the medication;
  • preparatory coaching sessions with your attendant;
  • experiential sessions or journeys with ketamine administered either sublingually (under the tongue), intranasally (through the nose), orally or via intramuscular shot (injection);
  • Integration Coaching between ketamine sessions to explore the material from your journey and maximize its benefit to your health and wellbeing.

Healing is not an event. Healing is a journey.

Dr. Sharp has completed training with PRATI and Polaris Insight Center in the use of attended ketamine sessions. In combination with integration counseling, this accelerates the healing process. Our KAT attendants and integration coaches are not psychotherapists. They are, however, trained as coaches in a mode of compassionate presence to the individual patient and their unique healing process. We know it is this unwavering and sensitive presence that allows for the nervous system of the patient to feel safe and accompanied into the journey of discovery that is healing. Additionally, in alignment with the foundational Plum Spring Clinic belief, our coach-attendants’ guiding principle is respect for the innate healing intelligence at the core of each patient, which we recognize as the true healer.

The skillful focus of our staff — physicians and coach-attendants — recognizes the patient in the driver seat of their healing journey.  You are in charge, and the process goes at your pace. We work with what you want to work with, utilizing the following elements:

  • Deep listening;
  • Asking questions that encourage you to make kindly contact with wounded or alienated parts within;
  • Opening your story or stories as much as your inner protective system allows;
  • Acknowledging and honoring the woundings;
  • Welcoming and celebrating the discovery of authentic parts and true nature of the self.

We recognize that there may be occasions when a referral to a psychotherapist or psychiatrist may be indicated.

A good question recently received from a prospective patient:

In my research, I’ve come across many providers of KAT in the area, and I’d really like to know what sets Dr. Sharp/Plum Spring Clinic apart from others.

Here is the answer given by Plum Spring Clinic staff member and KAT Guide, Lorre Fleming:

Dr. Sharp is a very special practitioner. He is the most respectful, compassionate, and intuitive practitioner I have ever encountered. He was trained in Western allopathic medicine at Harvard Medical School. After decades of standard medical practice, he developed cancer and took a sabbatical. During this time, he realized he hadn’t been practicing medicine with the kind of depth that he knew was needed for so many patients. He studied Chinese medicine and acupuncture, as well as Shamanism. He has done and continues to do his own personal depth work and learning.

The staff of Plum Spring Clinic is a small, tight-knit group of lifelong learners and spiritual practitioners. We bring a deep sense of sacredness to the work of supporting the healing and growth of our clients, ourselves, and each other. We understand that it is the respectful, non-judgmental, non-pathologizing container of safe, trusting relationship in cooperation with the client’s innate healing wisdom that heals.

There are an ever-increasing number of people practicing KAT, and many of them are highly skilled and doing excellent work. Which is the best match for an individual client depends on many factors and ultimately is best determined by an encounter, either virtual or in person, to sense whether or not there is resonance.

 

Ketamine-Assisted Therapy Resources

For a good discussion of Internal Family Systems and Ketamine-Assisted Therapy, see this video:

Here is a thoughtful interview with author Michael Pollan:

https://onbeing.org/programs/michael-pollan-and-katherine-may-the-future-of-hope-4/

 

Contact us today with questions or to schedule an appointment.