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Classification: Hallucinogenic dissociative anesthetic

Commercial Names: Ketalar, Ketanest, Ketaset

Common Names/Nicknames: K, special K, ket, K2, kitties

Active Compound: Ketamine

Found in: Prescription ketamine powder, pill, or liquid


Mode of Consumption: Ingestion, injection, insufflation

DEA Scheduling/Legal Status (in US): Schedule III, legal with prescription with limited ability to refill


Hallucinations, euphoria, dissociation, impaired coordination, anesthesia, hyperactivity, memory loss, nausea, anxiety, delirium


Acute: Confusion, hypertension, increased heart rate, loss of motor control, accidental injury, respiratory depression, coma, fatal overdose

Chronic: Impaired memory, urinary tract disease, bladder scarification, permanent brain

Dangerous Drug Combinations: 

Potentially fatal combination with alcohol, barbiturates, methaqualone, benzodiazepines, and other drugs that suppress breathing. Possibly dangerous combination with antidepressants, ecstasy, and other drugs that affect serotonin levels.

Special Considerations: 

Associated with sexual assaults and/or rape.

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“Students may bring an intoxicated or drug-impaired friend to University Health Services or to a hospital, or seek assistance from College residential life staff or HUPD, and by doing this, neither they nor the friend will face disciplinary action from the College for having used or provided alcohol or drugs.”

                                                                                    The Amnesty Policy

                                                                                    Harvard College Student Handbook



Buzzed: The Straight Facts About the Most Used and Abused Drugs from Alcohol to Ecstasy (Third Edition), by Cynthia Kuhn, Scott Swartzwelder, and Wilkie Wilson. Published 2008 by W. W. Norton & Company.


National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), part of the National Institute of Health (NIH) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.



U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), part of the U.S. Department of Justice.



Erowid Organization


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