Comparison of Droperidol and Midazolam Versus Haloperidol and Lorazepam for Acute Agitation Management in the Emergency Department

Link to article at PubMed

Ann Pharmacother. 2023 Mar 31:10600280231163192. doi: 10.1177/10600280231163192. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: Acute agitation accounts for up to 2.6% of visits to the emergency department (ED). To date, a standard of care for the management of acute agitation has not been established. Few studies have evaluated antipsychotic and benzodiazepine combinations.

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to evaluate effectiveness and safety of combination therapy for acute agitation with intramuscular (IM) droperidol and midazolam (D+M) compared with IM haloperidol and lorazepam (H+L) in patients in the ED.

METHODS: This was a single-center, retrospective medical record review of patients presenting to a large, academic ED with acute agitation from July 2020 through October 2021. The primary outcome was percentage of patients requiring additional agitation medication within 60 minutes of combination administration. Secondary outcomes included average time to repeat dose administration and average number of repeat doses required before ED discharge.

RESULTS: A total of 306 patients were included for analysis: 102 in the D+M group and 204 in the H+L group. Repeat dose within 60 minutes occurred in 7 (6.9%) and 28 (13.8%) patients in the D+M and H+L groups, respectively (P = 0.065). A total of 28.4% of D+M patients and 30.9% of H+L patients required any repeat dose during their ED visit. Time to repeat dose was 12 and 24 minutes in the D+M and H+L, respectively (P = 0.22). The adverse event rate was 2.9% in each group.

CONCLUSION AND RELEVANCE: IM D+M resulted in a lower rate of repeat doses of acute agitation medication compared with IM H+L, though this was not statistically significant. Both therapies were safe, and the adverse event rate was low.

PMID:36999520 | DOI:10.1177/10600280231163192

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