Safe use recommendations for “Bolus-Dose” vasopressors in the emergency department

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This article discusses the wide range of issues to consider when evaluating the role of bolus-dose vasopressors in the ED and provides recommendations based on current safe medication practices guidelines” Holden et al (2017).

Abstract:

The use of intermittently administered doses of vasopressors to correct hypotension in the emergency department (ED), commonly referred to as bolus-dose pressors, push-dose pressors, Neo-sticks, or phenyl sticks, has been widely advocated outside of the traditional printed medical literature. No outcomes data of this practice exist to demonstrate benefits over traditional continuous infusion of vasopressors. Use of bolus-dose vasopressors in the ED setting raises a number of patient safety concerns, and misuse and errors in the preparation and administration of bolus-dose vasopressors may result in patient harm. A systems-based approach should be implemented to maximize safety and patient benefits if bolus-dose vasopressors are used. This article discusses the wide range of issues to consider when evaluating the role of bolus-dose vasopressors in the ED and provides recommendations based on current safe medication practices guidelines.

Reference:

Holden, D., Ramich, J., Timm, E., Pauze, D. and Lesar, T. (2017) Safety Considerations and Guideline-Based Safe Use Recommendations for “Bolus-Dose” Vasopressors in the Emergency Department. Annals of Emergency Medicine. June 8th. [epub ahead of print].

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.annemergmed.2017.04.021

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