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A randomised, controlled trial of cognitive and psychomotor recovery from midazolam sedation following reversal with oral flumazenil

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Nick Girdler, John Lyne


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Flumazenil is traditionally administered intravenously to reverse the adverse effects of over sedation with benzodiazepines. The aim of this study was to test postoperative cognitive and psychomotor recovery from midazolam conscious sedation, following reversal with orally administered flumazenil. It was hypothesised that when administered by the oral route, flumazenil may enhance recovery over a prolonged period, thus increasing safety. Eighteen patients requiring intravenous midazolam sedation for dental treatment completed a randomised, double-blind, crossover trial. Following treatment the patients' sedation was reversed using either flumazenil or saline (as placebo), administered orally, on alternate appointments. Assessment of mood and cognitive function were undertaken using ClinPhone.cdr®, a highly sensitive and specific computerised battery of cognitive tests administered by telephone prior to sedation and every hour for seven hours post reversal. Results indicate that within 20 min of administration, oral flumazenil is capable of partially reversing some cognitive and psychomotor impairments but the attentional and stimulus discrimination effects of midazolam sedation still remain.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Girdler NM; Lyne JP; Wallace R; Neave N; Scholey A; Wesnes KA; Herman C

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Anaesthesia

Year: 2002

Volume: 57

Issue: 9

Pages: 868-876

ISSN (print): 0003-2409

ISSN (electronic): 1365-2044

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell


DOI: 10.1046/j.1365-2044.2002.02785.x

PubMed id: 12190751


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