Propofol and dexmedetomidine may cause hemodynamic adverse effects (AEs) and more data are needed in a trauma and surgical population.
The objective of this study was to evaluate the rate of hemodynamic AEs requiring an intervention between dexmedetomidine and propofol in a critically ill trauma and surgical population.
This was a retrospective cohort study at a Level 1 trauma center. Intensive care unit patients admitted from October 1, 2017, through October 31, 2018, were divided into two groups: dexmedetomidine or propofol. The primary end point was the proportion of patients who required a therapeutic intervention for a hemodynamic AE within the first 24 hr of initiation of dexmedetomidine or propofol.
A total of 800 charts were reviewed and 85 patients (dexmedetomidine [n = 35] and propofol [n = 50]) were included. The study population consisted of Caucasian (86%) males (61%) with a median age of 61 [interquartile range—IQR 48, 72], and 18% and 24% required antihypertensive and vasopressor agents, respectively. No difference in the primary outcome was observed (17 [49%] vs. 27 [54%], p = .624). There was no difference in the overall incidence of hemodynamic AE (18 [51%] vs. 30 [60%], p = .433). Dexmedetomidine patients had a greater decrease in median heart rate (HR) compared with the propofol (23 [IQR 16, 41] vs. 14 [IQR 5, 24] beats/min, p = .002).
The rate of hemodynamic AEs requiring therapeutic interventions was similar between dexmedetomidine and propofol in a critically ill trauma and surgical population; however, dexmedetomidine may be associated with a larger decrease in HR.