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Hypothermia and barbiturate coma for refractory status epilepticus.

Authors
  • Orlowski, J P
  • Erenberg, G
  • Lueders, H
  • Cruse, R P
Type
Published Article
Journal
Critical Care Medicine
Publisher
Ovid Technologies (Wolters Kluwer) - Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Publication Date
Apr 01, 1984
Volume
12
Issue
4
Pages
367–372
Identifiers
PMID: 6705545
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Three pediatric patients with generalized status epilepticus unresponsive to therapy with conventional anticonvulsants were successfully treated with moderate hypothermia (30 degrees to 31 degrees C) and barbiturate coma with thiopental. All 3 patients were treated with thiopental at doses producing burst suppression or an isoelectric tracing on the EEG and thiopental and barbiturate levels were followed sequentially in the plasma. Continuous thiopental infusion rates of 5 to 55 mg/kg X h maintained burst suppression and correlated with plasma thiopental levels of 25 to 40 mg/dl. Total doses of thiopental used to obtain and maintain burst suppression ranged from 15 to 50 g over 48 to 120 h. In all 3 patients, control of the status epilepticus was obtained. Moderate hypothermia and thiopental barbiturate coma are indicated in patients with generalized tonic-clonic status epilepticus which cannot be controlled with standard anticonvulsant drug therapy. This regimen has the advantage that the patient can be managed in an ICU without the need for general anesthesia with volatile anesthetic agents.

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