Published in

Springer, Psychopharmacology, 11(237), p. 3295-3302, 2020

DOI: 10.1007/s00213-020-05611-y



Export citation

Search in Google Scholar

Urothelial toxicity of esketamine in the treatment of depression

This paper was not found in any repository, but could be made available legally by the author.
This paper was not found in any repository, but could be made available legally by the author.

Full text: Unavailable

Green circle
Preprint: archiving allowed
Orange circle
Postprint: archiving restricted
Red circle
Published version: archiving forbidden
Data provided by SHERPA/RoMEO


Abstract Rationale Ketamine is the first widely used substance with rapid-onset antidepressant action. However, there are uncertainties regarding its potential urothelial toxicity, particularly after repeated application. In the context of rising recreational ketamine use, severe side effects affecting the human urinary tract have been reported. It is assumed that ketamine interacts with bladder urothelial cells and induces apoptosis. Objectives This study aimed to assess whether single or repeated doses of esketamine used in an antidepressant indication are associated with urinary toxicity. Methods We included male and female inpatients with a current episode of depression and a diagnosis of recurrent depressive disorder, bipolar disorder or schizoaffective disorder according to ICD-10 criteria (n = 25). The esketamine treatment schedule involved a maximum of 3× weekly dosing at 0.25–0.5 mg/kg i.v. or s.c. The primary outcome was the change in urine toxicity markers (leukocytes, erythrocytes, protein and free haemoglobin). Description of demographic, clinical and laboratory data was conducted using means, standard deviations, frequencies and percentages. Changes in urinary toxicity markers over time were evaluated using linear mixed models with gender as a covariate. Results The participants received an average of 11.4 (SD 8) esketamine treatments, and an average number of 11.2 (SD 8) urine samples were analysed over the course of treatment. Neither urinary leukocyte concentration (F(20; 3.0) = 3.1; p = 0.2) nor erythrocyte concentration (F(20;2.2) = 4.1; p = 0.2) showed a significant trend towards increase during the course of esketamine treatment. Similarly, free haemoglobin and protein concentrations, which were analysed descriptively, did not display a rise during treatment. There was a significant improvement in depression ratings after esketamine treatment (p < 0.001). Conclusions This study is, to the best of our knowledge, the first to focus on urothelial toxicity of esketamine used in antidepressant indication and dose. The results indicate that the use of single or repeated doses of esketamine is unlikely to cause urothelial toxicity. The results are in need of confirmation as sample size was small.