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On Friday night, British rapper Zuby wrote on Twitter: "I just saw a TV ad for anti-depression medication and the listed side effects included SUICIDAL THOUGHTS, stroke, heart attacks, and death."
Musk replied to Zuby: "I have serious concerns about SSRIs, as they tend to zombify people."
Musk admitted that he occasionally uses the drug ketamine.
"Occasional use of ketamine is a much better option, in my opinion," Musk tweeted. "I have a prescription for when my brain chemistry sometimes goes super negative."
A Wall Street Journal speculated that Musk used ketamine in an article published in June. The article claimed that Silicon Valley entrepreneurs – such as Musk and Google cofounder Sergey Brin – use psychedelics and similar substances such as ketamine, LSD, and psilocybin.
The WSJ reported, "The account of Musk’s drug use comes from people who witnessed him use ketamine and others with direct knowledge of his use."
Ketamine is a "dissociative injected anesthetic (blocks sensory perception) that has been available by prescription in the U.S. since the 1970s for human and veterinary uses," according to Drugs.com.
The site adds, "Prescription ketamine is available in a clear liquid or off-white powder form for intravenous injection or as a nasal spray."
"Ketamine is generally considered safe, including for those who are experiencing suicidal ideation (thoughts or plans for suicide)," wrote Dr. Peter Grinspoon in Harvard Health Publishing – the consumer health education division of Harvard Medical School. "The main side effects are dissociation, intoxication, sedation, high blood pressure, dizziness, headache, blurred vision, anxiety, nausea, and vomiting."
Grinspoon warned against ketamine use by people with a history of schizophrenia, substance use disorder, pregnant women, older adults with symptoms of dementia, and teenagers.
Speaking of people suffering from serious depression, Grinspoon said, "Ketamine can provide help and hope to patients who have not found relief with any other treatments. Given its efficacy in people considering suicide, it is plausible that ketamine may be lifesaving."
A Yale Medicine article on how ketamine could help with depression:
Interestingly, studies from Yale research labs showed that the drug ketamine, which was widely used as anesthesia during surgeries, triggers glutamate production, which, in a complex, cascading series of events, prompts the brain to form new neural connections. This makes the brain more adaptable and able to create new pathways, and gives patients the opportunity to develop more positive thoughts and behaviors. This was an effect that had not been seen before, even with traditional antidepressants.
Musk has previously railed against SSRIs – which stands for Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors.
"SSRI antidepressants are a type of antidepressant that have been shown to increase levels of serotonin within the brain," according to Drugs.com.
Musk said in June, "Depression is overdiagnosed in the US, but for some people it really is a brain chemistry issue. But zombifying people with SSRIs for sure happens way too much. From what I’ve seen with friends, ketamine taken occasionally is a better option."
Musk has a net worth of more than $232 billion – making him the richest person in the world, according to Forbes' real-time billionaires list.
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Paul Sacca is a staff writer for Blaze News.