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Nurse’s License Suspended For Ketamine Overdosing


Healthcare workers tend to be minimalistic when it comes to prescribing medications because an overdose of certain drugs can lead to serious side effects and even fatality. A nurse in Arizona was just the opposite, giving patients ketamine as a sedative. The nurse also did not monitor the patients after they received the dosage.

The state board suspended the man’s nurse practitioner license after he was investigated for improperly administering ketamine to patients who received aesthetic treatments. After giving patients excessive doses of ketamine, the nurse failed to monitor the patients. The board stated that the man’s treatment methods posed a “high risk to public health and safety.”

The nurse improperly sedated patients with high doses of ketamine while performing routine treatments such as Botox injections. He did not properly monitor the patients during sedation.

The board also found that the nurse gave ketamine to patients without first obtaining proper consent, so the patients may not have been made aware that they were being given the drug. The nursing board also discovered that on seven instances, the man performed medical treatments that were beyond his authorized scope.

In September, the state nursing board issued an emergency order of suspension against the nurse’s license. In November, the man and the board reached a consent agreement. The nurse was ordered to surrender his license. The board stated that the license surrender was necessary to “protect the public health and safety” from the man’s unprofessional conduct.

Dangers of Ketamine

Ketamine is a drug that works similarly to PCP. It is used to distort sensory perception and impart a feeling of detachment. While ketamine has an approved medical and veterinary use as an anesthetic, it is often used illegally. It is a Schedule III controlled substance.

In recent years, many teens use ketamine as a party drug. It is often used in conjunction with other drugs such as MDMA, cocaine, amphetamine, or methamphetamine. This is a dangerous practice, as using ketamine with alcohol or other central nervous system  depressants can result in respiratory depression and even death.

Ketamine is often marketed for a wide variety of psychiatric disorders, such as anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and obsessive-compulsive disorder. However, it is not FDA approved for the treatment of any psychiatric disorder.

Low doses of ketamine can result in the following effects:

  • Disorientation and confusion
  • Loss of motor coordination
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea, or vomiting
  • Increased blood pressure or heart rate
  • Changes to breathing or body temperature
  • Changes in sensory perceptions, such as visual or auditory hallucinations
  • Feeling detached from yourself or your environment

Keep Your License With Help From a Tampa Nursing License Lawyer

Nurses need to take care of their patients in the most appropriate manner. Improper dosing of medications can lead to actions against a license.

A Tampa nursing license lawyer from The Law Offices of David P. Rankin, P.A. can assess your situation and help you keep your license. Schedule a consultation today by calling (813) 968-6633 or filling out the online form.