[Cystitis and ketamine associated bladder dysfunction]

Actas Urol Esp. 2012 Jan;36(1):60-4. doi: 10.1016/j.acuro.2011.06.020. Epub 2011 Sep 28.
[Article in Spanish]


Objectives: To analyze the prevalence of lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) in recreational ketamine users and evaluate its relationship with the consumption pattern.

Material and methods: Evaluation of 13 ketamine users. The presence of LUTS, gross hematuria and lumbar spine pain was analyzed. The ketamine usage pattern was recorded: initiation, administration route, dose in the last month and frequency of usage.

Results: Six patients (46%) reported LUTS, with daily mean micturations every 42 minutes and nighttime of 3 episodes, with dysuria (100%), urgency (100%), incontinence (20%), decreased flow (80%), hypogastric or perineal pain (80%), gross hematuria (80%) and bilateral lumbar spine pain (40%). Symptomatic patients described a mean intake of inhaled ketamine of 3g/day (SD 2), 80% with a daily frequency and the asymptomatic ones of 1.03 g/day (SD 0.92) limited to weekends. The mean consumption time to the appearance of the symptoms was 31 months (SD 16.29). Intensity of the symptoms was related with the ketamine dose and improved on increasing water intake.

Conclusions: There seems to be a relationship between the picture with the dose and frequency of consumption, there being factors that reinforce the hypothesis that this action of the drug is due to the harmful effect on the urothelium. The process to identify it on time should be known, since the only known effective measure is to stop the consumption in the initial phases.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Cystitis / chemically induced*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists / administration & dosage
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists / adverse effects*
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists / pharmacology
  • Female
  • Hematuria / chemically induced
  • Humans
  • Illicit Drugs / adverse effects*
  • Illicit Drugs / pharmacology
  • Ketamine / administration & dosage
  • Ketamine / adverse effects*
  • Ketamine / pharmacology
  • Male
  • Pain / chemically induced
  • Receptors, N-Methyl-D-Aspartate / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Urinalysis
  • Urination Disorders / chemically induced
  • Urothelium / drug effects
  • Young Adult


  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists
  • Illicit Drugs
  • Receptors, N-Methyl-D-Aspartate
  • Ketamine