Propofol-Based Palliative Sedation to Treat Antipsychotic-Resistant Agitated Delirium.

Journal of pain & palliative care pharmacotherapy

PubMedID: 28506099

Covarrubias-Gómez A, López Collada-Estrada M. Propofol-Based Palliative Sedation to Treat Antipsychotic-Resistant Agitated Delirium. J Pain Palliat Care Pharmacother. 2017;1-5.
Delirium is a common problem in terminally ill patients that is associated with significant distress and, hence, considered a palliative care emergency. The three subtypes of delirium are hyperactive, hypoactive, and mixed, depending on the level of psychomotor activity and arousal disturbance. When agitated delirium becomes refractory in the setting of imminent dying, the agitation may be so severe that palliative sedation (PS) is required. Palliative sedation involves the administration of sedative medications with the purpose of reducing level of consciousness for patients with refractory suffering in the setting of a terminal illness. Propofol is a sedative that has a short duration of action and a very rapid onset. These characteristics make it relatively easy to titrate. Reported doses range from 50 to 70 mg per hour. The authors present a case of antipsychotic-resistant agitated delirium treated with a propofol intravenous infusion.