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Discontinuation of prolonged infusions of dexmedetomidine in critically ill children with heart disease

Nelson H. Burbano| Andrea V. Otero| Donald E. Berry| Richard A. Orr| Ricardo A. Munoz
Pediatric Original
Volume 38, Issue 2 / February , 2012

Pages 300 - 307

Abstract

Purpose

To describe changes in hemodynamic variables, sedation, and pain score after discontinuation of prolonged infusions of dexmedetomidine in a pediatric population of critically ill cardiac patients.

Methods

Retrospective case series of patients who received continuous infusions of dexmedetomidine for longer than 3 days in a pediatric cardiac intensive care unit from 2008 to 2010.

Results

Sixty-two patients, age 5.2 months (range 0.3 months–17 years) and weight 5.1 kg (range 2.2–84 kg), were included. Thirty-nine patients (63%) were younger than 1 year of age. Median duration of dexmedetomidine infusion was 5.8 days (range 4–26 days) and median infusion dose was 0.71 μg/kg/h (range 0.2–2.1 μg/kg/h). Median weaning time and dose at discontinuation were 43 h (range 0–189 h) and 0.2 μg/kg/h (range 0.1–1.3 μg/kg/h). Tachycardia, transient hypertension and agitation were observed in 27, 35 and 27% of patients. Episodes of tachycardia were more frequent in children older than 1 year of age (61 vs. 8%, p < 0.001), patients who received dexmedetomidine for 4 days when compared to those who received 5 days or longer (48 vs. 17%, p = 0.011), and patients whose infusion was discontinued abruptly (42 vs. 14%, p = 0.045). Tachyarrhythmias were seen in nine patients (15%) after discontinuation of the dexmedetomidine infusion. Adequate sedation and analgesia scores at the moment of infusion discontinuation were seen in 90 and 88% of patients, respectively.

Conclusions

Our study suggests that tachycardia, transient hypertension, and agitation are frequently observed in pediatric cardiac intensive care unit patients after discontinuing prolonged dexmedetomidine infusions.

Keywords

References

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