Can What is ketamine? Possible Risks Associated with the Medication That Killed ‘Friends’ Star Matthew Perry

Khabar Lekh
6 Min Read

According to his autopsy, which was made public on Friday, beloved “Friends” actor Matthew Perry, who played Chandler Bing on one of the most enduring and iconic TV shows ever, passed away from the severe effects of the anesthetic ketamine.

Matthew Perry

The 54-year-old actor’s death, which was ruled an accident, was also caused by drowning “in the heated end of his pool,” the Associated Press reported on Friday, citing the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner. Buprenorphine, a medication used to treat opioid use disorder, and coronary artery disease are also said to have played a role in his demise.

ketamine On October 28, Matthew Perry was discovered unconscious at his Pacific Palisades home in the Los Angeles area. He was subsequently pronounced deceased. The coroner’s report states that although the actor had taken drugs in the past, he had been “reportedly clean for 19 months.”

The coroner noted that he had reportedly undergone ketamine infusion therapy for anxiety and depression. However, it was stated that he had received his final medical care a week and a half prior to his passing.

It was reported earlier in the day that Matthew Perry had played pickleball. After returning from running errands, his assistant discovered him face down in the pool. She informed the police that the actor hadn’t been ill, hadn’t complained about his health, and hadn’t displayed any signs of recent drug or alcohol use.

Although ketamine—also referred to as the party drug Special K has recently been heralded as a ground-breaking treatment for major depression, there are drawbacks.


Matthew Perry

What is ketamine?

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration states that ketamine, an anesthetic with some hallucinogenic effects, is used by veterinarians and medical professionals. It is a dissociative drug that distorts perception of sight and sound and causes users to feel detached from their surroundings and their pain. It is comparable to psychedelics like nitrous oxide..

Is ketamine useful in treating depression?

The FDA has only approved ketamine for use as a nasal spray for depression that is resistant to treatment. However, the U.S. National Institutes of Health’s National Library of Medicine reports that it is increasingly being used “off label” to treat chronic pain, depression, and suicidal thoughts. Infusions are being offered by more clinics as a depression treatment option. Both during and after the infusion, patients are observed.


For what conditions is ketamine approved?

According to the DEA, it has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in small doses for use as a nasal spray (esketamine) for treatment-resistant depression when combined with another oral antidepressant, as well as for use as a short-acting anesthetic in humans and animals. This quick-acting antidepressant is meant to fill the gap until SSRIs take effect, which may take several weeks.

Is ketamine abuse possible?

It can be used illegally as an injectable, a liquid that is combined with other liquids, or a powder that can be smoked, snorted, or mixed into drinks. Some street names for it include Horse Trank, Jet K, Kit Kat, Purple, Special K, Special La Coke, Super Acid, Super K, Jet Tranquilizer, and Cat Valium. The DEA states that an overdose can result in unconsciousness and dangerously slowed breathing.

According to the Nemours Children’s Health system, users frequently combine it with other drugs like cocaine or Ecstasy (also known as “kitty flipping”), or sprinkle it on marijuana blunts. Tobacco can also be used to smoke it.

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The “K hole” excursion typically lasts two hours or less. Users may experience nausea, vomiting, and/or cognitive and memory issues during this period. High doses can slow breathing, numbness throughout the body, and cause mobility problems.

What symptoms indicate an overdose of ketamine?

Overdosing may result in fatal consequences such as respiratory failure.

Is it appropriate to use buprenorphine and ketamine together?

Perry reportedly had ketamine and buprenorphine in his system, a drug authorized by the FDA to treat opioid use disorder. According to, taking the two medications concurrently carries a “major” risk and increases the likelihood of side effects like “dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, difficulty concentrating, excessive sedation, and respiratory depression.” For both, it says that until you know how the medications affect you, “avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving, operating hazardous machinery, or engaging in potentially hazardous activities.”

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