The comparative hemodynamic effects of methohexital and remifentanil in electroconvulsive therapy
ABSTRACT Remifentanil is a short acting opioid frequently used to supplement general anesthesia for brief procedures. Narcotic agents are known for their ability to blunt autonomic responses to stimuli such as laryngoscopy and intubation and do not alter seizure threshold. We hypothesized that the combination of remifentanil and methohexital for induction would produce favorable suppression of sympathetic response during electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). With Institutional Review Board approval and informed consent, patients were enrolled in a prospective, randomized, double-blind, crossover study of methohexital alone versus remifentanil with an adjuvant of low-dose methohexital. One hundred ten ECT treatments were evaluated and subjects were treated in an alternating fashion with one of two induction protocols: Methohexital alone in an 80-100 mg IV bolus or remifentanil 500 mcg IV bolus combined with methohexital 40 mg IV. Bilateral ECT was performed in standard fashion and systolic blood pressure and heart rate were recorded throughout the procedure. No significant differences were found in baseline hemodynamic values between the two groups. Heart rate was significantly lower in the remifentanil group versus methohexital group at one minute post-induction and just prior to ECT stimulus. Pre-ECT systolic blood pressure was not significantly different between the two groups. Heart rate remained lower in the remifentanil group at all measured timepoints during the treatment and continuously for five minutes after the seizure. Systolic blood pressure was significantly lower at one minute following the end of seizure and five minutes after end of seizure. Remifentanil's short duration of action, favorable side effect profile, potential proconvulsant activity and ability to suppress hemodynamic response make it a potential novel drug for ECT induction.
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ABSTRACT: Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is standard treatment of severe depression. The induction of a seizure is a core event in successful ECT. Although propofol is a frequently used anesthetic agent, one of its limitations is a reduction of seizure duration. No such effects have been reported regarding remifentanil, an ultrarapid-acting opioid that is used to induce and maintain anesthesia. The simultaneous administration of propofol and remifentanil may have similar safety and efficacy in terms of induction of anesthesia during ECT as propofol alone and significantly increase seizure duration. Twenty-one ECT patients (10 men, 11 women, aged 24 to 81 years) were recruited. Muscle paralysis was achieved with succinylcholine (0.5-0.75 mg/kg intravenously [IV]). Unconsciousness was induced by either propofol (1 mg/kg IV) or propofol (0.5 mg/kg IV) + remifentanil (1 microg/kg) in a crossover format. ECT was administered according to established clinical protocols at the Sheba Medical Center, Israel. No changes in ECT current were permitted in the 2 protocols of each patient. Statistical analysis was based on paired t tests. In all but 2 cases, seizure duration was significantly longer in the remifentanil group than in the control group (motor seizure 53.7 +/- 28.3 seconds vs. 29.5 +/- 10.9 seconds, t = 4.017, P = 0.0007; Electroencephalographic (EEG) seizures 60.8 +/- 25.1 seconds vs. 40.1 +/- 17.0 seconds, t = 3.971, P = 0.001). No significant differences were found in mean recovery time, post-treatment elevation in blood pressure, heart-beat, or oxygen saturation. During anesthesia, the addition of remifentanil to propofol appears to be as effective as propofol alone with regard to anesthesia efficacy and cardiovascular function while significantly increasing seizure duration. Whether this discovery is of relevance to the clinical efficacy of ECT remains to be tested.Journal of Ect 01/2006; 21(4):235-8. DOI:10.1097/01.yct.0000180040.06338.ac · 1.39 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The primary objectives were to review studies that used remifentanil in electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and to determine whether remifentanil has potential advantages over other anesthetics. The author reviewed 12 original studies obtained through a MEDLINE database search that examined remifentanil as an anesthetic in patients receiving ECT. Remifentanil was associated with longer seizure durations when used as the sole anesthetic or as an adjunct when the primary anesthetic dose was lowered. Individual studies reported higher postictal suppression index and lower initial seizure thresholds and less rise in seizure thresholds with remifentanil. Data on hemodynamic effects were mixed but suggested favorable effects with remifentanil when seizure duration was not prolonged. Studies support the use of remifentanil in ECT, particularly in patients with brief seizures, high seizure thresholds, and postictal hemodynamic instability. Broad variability in study design, selection and dosing of anesthetics, electrode placement, and limited examination of potentially relevant variables such as age, sex, concomitant medications; and stimulus parameters attenuate the certainty of these results. Advantages in safety and efficacy over other anesthetics remain undetermined. Further study of remifentanil in ECT is warranted, given the methodological limitations and exclusion of important outcomes in the current literature.The journal of ECT 06/2011; 27(4):323-7. DOI:10.1097/YCT.0b013e31821072d2 · 1.39 Impact Factor
- The journal of ECT 09/2013; 29(3):153-5. DOI:10.1097/YCT.0b013e31827a7aef · 1.39 Impact Factor