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Benefits of Dexmedetomidine in Management of Post-ECT Agitation

Narang, Puneet MD*†; Ianovich, Francesca BS*; Sarai, Simrat Kaur MD; Lippmann, Steven MD

doi: 10.1097/YCT.0000000000000393

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is an intervention for patients with a variety of psychiatric conditions. Occasionally, people exhibit dangerous degrees of agitation after this treatment, and some do not respond well to conventional pharmacotherapies. Dexmedetomidine is a central α-2 agonist that can induce significantly calmative effects in persons with post-ECT agitation. The indication for it is in calming individuals with acute and/or recurrent posttreatment agitation. Dexmedetomidine is safe and effective when infused just before, or postictally, at ECT sessions.

From the *University of Minnesota; †Regions Hospital, Minneapolis-St Paul, MN; and ‡University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, KY.

Received for publication November 30, 2016; accepted January 1, 2017.

Reprints: Puneet Narang, MD, Regions Hospital, 640 Jackson St, St Paul, MN 55101 (e-mail:

The authors have no conflicts of interest or financial disclosures to report.

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