October 18, 2021

Pre-Hospital Use of Ketamine in the Combative Patients

Summarized article by: Dr Keegan Bradley, MD, EMT-T

NAEMSP recently hosted a timely webinar: Pre-Hospital Use of Ketamine in the Combative Patient. 

Discussed in the webinar was an article that reviewed racial and gender differences in patients who received pre-hospital ketamine entitled: Are There Racial or Ethnic Disparities in EMS- Administered Sedation Among Patients in Police Custody. Miller M, Watanabe B, Brown L.

Dr Keegan Bradley summarized this article:
This article investigated whether there are racial disparities in the frequency of EMS sedation of patients in police custody. This retrospective observational study looked at 7.5 million EMS events from 1,289 agencies. It included cases that: EMS was requested by law enforcement; response by a paramedic level agency; and scene, transport, or disposition that the patient was in custody or under police control. After filtering the data, 50,542 met criteria. The proportion of males to females who received sedation was similar (1.2% vs 1.0% p value of 0.116). The proportions of white, black, and hispanic was also similar (1.2% vs 1.1% vs 1.0% p value of 0.330). This study demonstrated there is NO evidence of racial disparity in EMS administered sedation of patients in police custody. It also did show combative males were more likely than combative females to receive sedation.