What is Ketamine?

Ketamine is a short-acting anesthetic with rapid onset effects that is used in both humans and animals. Sold commercially in the United States in powder and liquid forms, Ketamine, is considered to be a “dissociative” anesthetic because of the feeling of being detached from reality that patients under the influence have described. It has been said to alter a persons perceptions of sight and sound and can cause slight hallucinogenic effects. Ketamine has gained popularity in recreational drug users because of it’s euphoric effects and the detachment from one’s pain or environment. Illegally distributed Ketamine often comes from a legitimate source, in particular, veterinarian clinics.

Cut-Off Levels (ng/mL)

200 ng/mL (Urine)

Window of Detection

1 – 3 Days (Urine)


How is it Used?

Ketamine comes in powder or liquid form and is commonly injected intravenously or intramuscularly, taken by mouth, and by nasal insufflation. 

What are the Effects?

The effects of Ketamine are felt rapidly and often last anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours.  Onset effects are typically slower when ingested orally.  Users have reported flashbacks, or a sudden and vivid memory of a Ketamine “trip”, occurring several weeks after they have used. Drugs with similar effects include, LSD, PCP, GHB, and Rohypnol.

Common Symptoms

  • Involuntary Rapid Eye Movement 
  • Dilated Pupils
  • Salivation
  • Tear Secretion
  • Stiffening of the Muscles 
  • Nausea
  • Unconsciousness (Signs of Overdose)
  • Respiratory Depression (Signs of Overdose)

Common Street Names

  • Special K
  • Vitamin K
  • K
  • Horse Tranquilizer
  • Cat Tranquilizer
  • Kit Kat
  • Purple

What does it Look Like?

White or off-white powder or liquid form and is often distributed in glass vials, plastic baggies, capsules, or tin-foil folds.

Legal Status

Schedule III non-narcotic substance under the United States Controlled Substances Act.  Ketamine is currently sold commercially in numerous countries, including the U.S., for medical use.

Testing Options

  • Integrated Urine Test Cup
  • Urine Test Dip Card

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