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Strip color for ketamine DOA test

Street terms for Ketamine: jet, super acid, Special “K”, green, K, cat Valium. 1

What does Ketamine look like?

  • Ketamine comes in a clear liquid and a white or off-white powder form.

How is Ketamine used?

  • Ketamine is a tranquilizer most commonly used on animals.
  • The liquid form can be injected, consumed in drinks, or added to smokable materials.
  • The powder form can be used for injection when dissolved.2
  • In certain areas, Ketamine is being injected intramuscularly.3

Who uses Ketamine?

  • Ketamine, along with the other “club drugs,” has become popular among teens and young adults at dance clubs and “raves.”

How does Ketamine get into the United States?

  • Marketed as a dissociative general anesthetic for human and veterinary use, the only known source of Ketamine is via diversion of pharmaceutical products.
  • Recent press reports indicate that a significant number of veterinary clinics are being robbed specifically for their Ketamine stock.
  • DEA reporting indicates that a major source of Ketamine in the United States is product diverted from pharmacies in Mexico.4

How much does Ketamine cost?

  • Prices average $20 to $25 per dosage unit.5

What are some consequences of Ketamine use?

  • Higher doses produce an effect referred to as “K-Hole,” an “out of body,” or “near-death” experience.6
  • Use of the drug can cause delirium, amnesia, depression, and long-term memory and cognitive difficulties. Due to its dissociative effect, it is reportedly used as a date-rape drug.7


1. Office of National Drug Control Policy, Street Terms: Drugs and the Drug Trade.
2. Drug Enforcement Administration, Club Drugs: An Update, September 2001.
3. National Institute on Drug Abuse, Community Drug Alert Bulletin: Club Drugs, December 1999.
4. Drug Enforcement Administration, Club Drugs: An Update, September 2001.
5. Ibid.
6. Ibid.
7. Ibid.

Source: U.S. Dept. of Justice

Drug Abuse Recognition (DAR)

As a point of reference, the following objective symptoms: Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, Vertical Gaze Nystagmus, Lack of Convergence, Pulse, Romberg Stand, Pupil Size, and Pupillary Reaction To Light are determined during a DAR evaluation to identify drug influence and impairment. The following objective symptoms of someone under the influence of ketamine may be used as a reference only, and should not be used to replace certified Drug Abuse Recognition Training.

Please contact Express Diagnostics if you would like more information on DAR-OS or drug abuse recognition training.

Dissociative Anesthetics: Phencyclidine, ketamine

Horizontal Gaze NystagmusPresent
Vertical Gaze NystagmusPresent
Lack of ConvergencePresent
Romberg StandFast/Normal/Slow
Pupil SizeNormal
Pupillary Reaction To LightNormal

Source: Graves & Associates