Ketamine was originally used for the purpose of anesthetizing both humans and animals. It stops the feeling of pain and is often used for operations. It often leads to a sense of numbness in the body, and paralysis of the muscles. It often makes users dissociate and detach from reality. Much like LSD, time and space becomes distorted and hallucinations are more than likely – even with a mild dose. Other effects include confusion, agitation, both short and long term memory impairment and panic attacks. Long term use of ketamine also means that the user may develop depression. It’s most often snorted, and the effect of the drug happens approximately after 20 minutes, lasting for an hour or two. A less common method is injecting it, which makes the effects immediate. The amount of ketamine will determine what kind of and how much of an impact it will have on the user. It comes in a variety of forms: pills, powders and a liquid – all depending on how it is consumed. Too much ketamine can lead to what is known as a’k-hole’ where the effects are amplified and can go on a lot longer. This detachment from reality is both frightening and dangerous. Some describe this as a near death experience. There’s quite a real threat of injury with ketamine – due to the user not being able to feel pain properly, you may not be aware that you have hurt yourself –or how serious it is. Ketamine has been known to cause serious bladder problems – urinating on it is rather frequent, and painful. Sometimes the urine is blood-stained and can contain tissue from the wall of the bladder. Even if you haven’t taken ketamine for a while, you may still have damaged your bladder so seriously, that it would need surgery to remove it. Ketamine originated as a mistaken identity for ‘ravers’ in 1992 – who were fooled into thinking they were buying ecstasy. Mixing ketamine with other drugs can be very risky – drugs like alcohol, opiates or benzodiazepines – as it can dangerously affect the way you breathe and how your heart works. Mixing it with ecstasy or amphetamines causes high blood pressure. Higher doses of the drug can cause death. From 2014, Ketamine became a class b controlled drug – formerly being class c. Possession could lead to a prison sentence of up to five years, and an unlimited fine, whilst supply can mean a sentence of up to 14 years in prison and an unlimited fine.