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Drug Guide


  • Mechanism of Action
  • Acts as a non-competitive antaagonist at the NMDA receptor
  • Reduces presynaptic release of glutamate
  • Agonises α and β adrenoceptors
  • Agonises opioid σ receptors

Clinical Use

  • Indications
  • Analgesia
  • General anaesthesia for procedures not requiring muscle relaxant
  • Induction of anaesthesia in conjunction with other agents
  • Contraindications
  • Severe cardiovascular disease - heart failure, poorly controlled hypertension, recent MI
  • Past stroke / brain tumour / intracerebral haemorrhage
  • Adverse Effects
  • Tachycardia
  • Hypertension
  • Diplopia / nystagmus
  • Raised intracranial pressure
  • Nausea / vomiting / anorexia
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