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The Influence of Age on Sensitivity to Dexmedetomidine Sedation During Spinal Anesthesia in Lower Limb Orthopedic Surgery

Xu, Bo, MD*; Li, Zhitao, MS; Zhou, Dongxu, MS; Li, Liuxun, MS*; Li, Pingyue, MD§; Huang, Huayang, MS§

doi: 10.1213/ANE.0000000000002531
Anesthetic Clinical Pharmacology: Brief Report

To investigate the influence of age on sensitivity to dexmedetomidine sedation in adult patients, we selected 79 patients scheduled for lower limb orthopedic surgery under spinal anesthesia to identify the dexmedetomidine ED50 for adequate sedation among different age groups. After a spinal anesthetic was placed, a dose of dexmedetomidine determined by the Dixon up–and–down method was administered over 15 minutes. The ED50 in the elderly group was lower than in the other 2 groups (elderly: 0.88 ± 0.07; middle aged: 1.16 ± 0.08; young: 1.21 ± 0.06 µg/kg; both P < .001). There was no difference between the young and middle-aged groups (P = .160).

Published ahead of print October 5, 2017.

From the *Department of Anesthesiology, Guangzhou General Hospital of Guangzhou Military Command, Guangzhou, China

Department of Anesthesiology, Peking University Shenzhen Hospital, Shenzhen, China

Department of Anesthesiology, Xiangyang Central Hospital, Xiangyang, China

§Department of Arthrosteopedics, Guangzhou General Hospital of Guangzhou Military Command, Guangzhou, China.

Published ahead of print October 5, 2017.

Accepted for publication August 23, 2017.

Funding: This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 61773130), the Special Project for Medical Science Development of PLA (Grant No. CGZ15C003), and the Foundation for Science and Technology Planning Project of Guangdong Province, China (Grant No. 2014A020215026).

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

The authors B. Xu and Z. Li contributed equally to this work.

Institutional review board: Guangzhou General Hospital of Guangzhou Military Command Medical Ethics Committee. E-mail:

This manuscript describes human research. This study was conducted with written informed consent from the study subjects and was registered before patient enrollment. This report describes an observational clinical study and case–control observational clinical study. The authors state that the report includes every item in the Strengthening the Report of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) checklist for case–control observational clinical studies.

Registry URL:;rank=1. Identifier: NCT02099253.

Reprints will not be available from the authors.

Address correspondence to Bo Xu, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Guangzhou General Hospital of Guangzhou Military Command, Guangzhou 510010, China. Address e-mail to

© 2017 International Anesthesia Research Society
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