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Anesthesiol Clin. 2011 Dec;29(4):663-74. doi: 10.1016/j.anclin.2011.09.006.

Altering intensive care sedation paradigms to improve patient outcomes.

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Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA.


Providing sedation and comfort for intensive care patients has evolved in the last 30 years but remains difficult for clinicians. As research has focused on this challenging area, the authors have identified ways to improve practice, including providing analgesia before sedation, strategies to help recognize dangerous adverse effects associated with the medications that are used, and better ways to monitor pain and delirium in patients. Dexmedetomidine and propofol have become the preferred sedatives for many ICU situations, and creative ways to administer them, such as linking awakening and breathing trials, are emerging. Finally, screening survivors for cognitive impairments may allow clinicians to refer them for the focused rehabilitation they require.

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