In the past five years, ketamine cystitis has emerged as a new, critical public health crisis. Researchers around the world have documented growing numbers of young adults who present with severe urinary tract symptoms and bleeding, resulting from their use of ketamine.
A recreational drug known for its dissociative anesthesia effects, ketamine has replaced heroin as the drug of choice throughout much of the world due, in great part, to its very low cost. No research has been done to determine the incidence of ketamine cystitis in the USA because most physicians do not ask about drug use when presented with bladder symptoms. Physicians must be educated about the role of ketamine in triggering bladder damage.
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