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Pediatr Emerg Care. 2007 Oct;23(10):690-5.

Etomidate versus pentobarbital for computed tomography sedations: report from the Pediatric Sedation Research Consortium.

Author information

1
Pediatric Emergency Medicine Associates, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, Atlanta, GA 30342, USA. Amy_Baxter@PEMA-LLC.com

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To compare efficacy, sedation duration, and adverse events after administration of etomidate or pentobarbital for diagnostic computed tomography (CT) scans.

METHODS:

A cohort of children sedated for CT scans between July 2004 and October 2005 was identified from a prospectively generated Pediatric Sedation Research Consortium database. The 24 Pediatric Sedation Research Consortium institutions prospectively record consecutive sedation data and adverse events on a Web-based tool. This study included all patients of American Society for Anesthesiologists (ASA) class I or II, between 6 months and 6 years old, sedated with etomidate or with intravenous pentobarbital with or without midazolam. Outcomes included sedation efficacy, duration (time from drug administration until cessation of monitoring), and complication rate.

RESULTS:

Of 3397 pediatric sedations for CT scans, 2587 met age and ASA criteria. Etomidate was administered by pediatric emergency physicians as the sole sedative for 446 sedation service cases; pentobarbital with or without midazolam was used in 396 sedations by a variety of providers. Sedation was "not ideal" for 11 pentobarbital sedations and 1 etomidate sedation. Median etomidate dose was 0.33 mg/kg (intraquartile rank, 0.30-0.44 mg/kg); median pentobarbital dose was 4 mg/kg (intraquartile rank, 3.2-4.8 mg/kg). Mean etomidate sedation (34 minutes; 95% confidence interval [CI], 32-36 minutes) was shorter than pentobarbital (144 minutes; 95% CI, 139-150 minutes). Etomidate patients were younger (24 vs. 29 months), whereas pentobarbital patients were more often of ASA class II (52% vs. 34%), both P < 0.001. Adverse events were more common with pentobarbital (4.5% vs. 0.9%; relative risk, 3.38%; 95% CI, 1.28%-9.45%). One etomidate and 2 pentobarbital patients experienced apnea.

CONCLUSIONS:

Etomidate as given by emergency physicians was more effective and efficient than pentobarbital, with rare adverse events.

PMID:
18090099
DOI:
10.1097/PEC.0b013e3181558d5c
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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