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Ketamine provides significantly reduced time to adequate sedation.

New member research, published in the Annals of Emergency Medicine, shows that in ED patients with severe agitation, intramuscular ketamine provided a significantly shorter time to adequate sedation than a combination of intramuscular midazolam and haloperidol.

The study, called Rapid Agitation Control with Ketamine in the Emergency Department, launched in the spring of 2018. EM Network member David Barbic leads the study, with EM Network co-authors Gary Andolfatto, Brian Grunau, and Frank Scheuermeyer.

Dr. Barbic was recently interviewed by the Centre for Health Evaluation and Outcome Sciences (CHÉOS). “The patients who were given ketamine were sedated much faster,” noted Dr. Barbic. Their median time to sedation was almost nine minutes earlier than for patients treated with midazolam/haloperidol. Anecdotally, Dr. Barbic says this shorter time to sedation probably translates to improved safety for hospital staff and other patients.

View the full study in the Annals of Emergency Medicine, Rapid Agitation Control With Ketamine in the Emergency Department: A Blinded, Randomized Controlled Trial.


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