Anesthetic may help bipolar depression.

Denver Post Wire Report

Posted: 08/10/2010 01:00:00 AM MDT

A new study suggests a 50-year-old drug commonly used as an anesthetic may deliver almost instant relief in some of the most troublesome cases of bipolar depression.

It has been known for several years that small doses of ketamine can relieve major depression. This study, done by researchers at the National Institute of Mental Health, is the first to demonstrate efficacy in patients with treatment-resistant bipolar depression.