The war on ketamine

Canadian researchers fight Chinese-led effort to declare anesthetic an illicit narcotic
National Post (Canada)
Monday, March 9, 2015

In a dispute that pits the war on drugs against global health needs — and one UN agency against another — a pair of Canadian researchers is spearheading a last-ditch bid to keep a widely used anesthetic from being declared an illicit narcotic. The Chinese-led proposal to put ketamine on the international schedule of “psychotropic” substances — alongside the likes of LSD and mescaline — stems from its use as a club drug said to deliver hallucinogenic “cheap thrills.” But “scheduling” the medicine would also likely deprive most of the developing world of an inexpensive anesthetic employed in countless surgeries.