A comparison of fentanyl, esmolol, and their combination for blunting the haemodynamic responses during rapid-sequence induction

K S Chung, R S Sinatra, J D Halevy, D Paige, D G Silverman
Canadian Journal of Anaesthesia 1992, 39 (8): 774-9
The purpose of this randomized, double-blind study was to compare the ability of a combination of fentanyl and esmolol to blunt the haemodynamic effects of intubation with that of either agent alone. Patients received fentanyl or saline four minutes before, and esmolol or saline two minutes before rapid-sequence induction of anaesthesia. The F2 group (n = 24) received fentanyl 2, the E2 group (n = 24) received esmolol 2, the F2/E2 group (n = 25) received a combination of fentanyl 2 and esmolol 2, and the F5 group (n = 26) received fentanyl 5 Following tracheal intubation, the maximum percent change from baseline heart rate was less in the F2/E2 and F5 groups (12% and 16% respectively) than in the E2 group (34%)(P < 0.05). The maximum percent changes from baseline systolic blood pressure in the F2/E2 and F5 groups (15% and 6% respectively) were less than in the F2 and E2 groups (24% and 33% respectively) (P < 0.05). The combination of a low dose of fentanyl and esmolol provides an alternative to a higher dose of fentanyl for blunting the haemodynamic responses to laryngoscopy and tracheal intubation during rapid-sequence induction in healthy patients.

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