Methoxetamine: a designer ketamine analogue

March 15, 2012, 11:04 pm



Ketamine-like Effects After Recreational Use of Methoxetamine. Hofer KE et al. Ann Emerg Med 2012 Jan 9 [Epub ahead of print]


Methoxetamine (MXE) is an analog to ketamine and phencyclidine (PCP). It has to date not been restricted in many jurisdictions and is sold over the internet as a “research chemical”. It goes by several street names, including:

  • M-ket
  • Kmax
  •  Mexxy
  • Special K (note: ketamine also appears under this street name)

Although there is scant scientific literature describing the pharmacology, toxicology, or clinical effects of MXE, it is reasonable to assume that they would be similar to those of ketamine or PCP. This interesting paper describes what the authors describe as the first laboratory-confirmed case report of intravenous MXE injection.

A 19-year-old male presented to the emergency department after injecting himself intravenously with MXE exhibiting extreme agitation, ataxia, and semi-stupor. He was oriented x 1, with hypertension (168/77), tachycardia (134 bpm), mydriasis, and nystagmus. His condition improved within 2 hours after treatment with midazolam and diazepam. The presence of MXE in the patient’s serum was confirmed by mass spectrometry.

The authors note that effects seen in this patient — tachycardia, hypertension, confusion, agitation, mydriasis, nystagmus, and ataxia — are similar to the adverse effects associated with ketamine.

Another  case report described a 32-year-old man to presented to the emergency department after injecting himself intramuscularly with MXE purchased over the internet. At the scene he was agitated. When he arrived at hospital, he was oriented x 2, with tachycardia (105 bpm) and hypertension (140/95). He had mydriasis and rotary nystagmus.

A recent review notes that users report effects from MXE similar to those of ketamine, but with a more delayed onset (up to 90 min) and a longer duration (5-7 h). Withdrawal symptoms have been reported.

Related posts:

Comprehensive review of new designer drugs

The science of designer drugs: essential review

“Party pills”: review of BZP and TFMPP




Phencyclidine (PCP)

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