Ketamine Abuse Syndrome: Hepatobiliary and Urinary Pathology Among Adolescents in Flushing, NY

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Ketamine is a recreational drug widely abused in East Asia and also in certain subpopulations of the United States. Many US clinicians are unaware of abuse symptoms, leading to misdiagnosis and missed opportunities for intervention. We will discuss clinical patterns that should alert a clinician to the possibility of ketamine abuse.


We present 6 adolescent patients who presented to the pediatric emergency department and inpatient wards with urinary and hepatobiliary symptoms in the setting of ketamine abuse.


We identified 6 patients with confirmed ketamine abuse who presented with epigastric pain or urinary pain. All had laboratory and radiographic evidence of disease.


Ketamine abuse is associated with a distinctive pattern of symptoms involving the urinary and hepatobiliary systems.

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