Table of Contents
How is excited delirium treated?
The overall consensus is for using antipsychotics for the management of delirium and reserving benzodiazepines for treatment in cases of withdrawal from alcohol or drug use. Apart from medication management, the patient’s environment plays a vital role as these patients should be kept in a quiet setting.
What causes sudden death in excited delirium?
However, molecular studies of the brain of autopsy victims who died in states of excited delirium reveal a loss of dopamine transporter function as a possible trigger of a lethal cascade of neural activities that progress to asphyxia and sudden cardiac arrest.
Which drugs can worsen excited delirium?
The triggers for ExDS include drug use and psychiatric illness. In general the drugs that can cause excited delirium are stimulants or hallucinogens. Cocaine, methamphetamine, PCP and LSD are the traditional triggers.
What Does excited delirium do?
Excited (or agitated) delirium is characterized by agitation, aggression, acute distress and sudden death, often in the pre-hospital care setting.
What is the background for excited delirium?
Excited delirium, however, is not listed in the manual. The term was first used in 1985 by forensic pathologist Charles Wetli to explain the cause of a series of seven deaths among people who used cocaine, all of whom were forcibly restrained and five of whom died in police custody.
Is there such a thing as excited delirium?
Excited delirium (ExDS), also known as agitated delirium (AgDS), is a controversial syndrome sometimes characterized as a potentially fatal state of extreme agitation and delirium.
Is excited delirium a real medical condition?
Excited delirium is not recognized by the World Health Organization, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Medical Association, and not listed as a medical condition in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders or International Classification of Diseases.
Can excited delirium cause death?
The authors concluded that “excited delirium is not a unique cause of death in the absence of restraint.” They discounted acute stimulant intoxication as a direct cause of death, given typically sublethal drug levels found on autopsy.
Is excited delirium a medical emergency?
Excited delirium is a medical emergency and needs medical attention as early as possible. This patient’s neurologic and metabolic systems have been supercharged. If the situation is not de-escalated quickly and the patient does not receive rapid medical intervention they may die of respiratory or cardiac arrest.