Journal article Open Access

Taming the Ketamine Tiger:

Domino, Edward F.

Pharmacologic actions of CI-581, a chemical derivative of phencyclidine, were determined in 20 volunteers from a prison population. The results indicate that this drug is an effective analgesic and anesthetic agent in doses of 1.0 to 2.0 mg per kilogram. With intravenous administration the onset of action is within 1 min and the effects last for about 5 to 10 min, depending on dosage level and individual variation. No tachyphylaxis was evident on repeat doses. Respiratory depression was slight and transient. Hypertension, tachycardia, and psychic changes are undesirable characteristics of the drug. Whether these can be modified by preanesthetic medication was not determined in this study. Recovery from analgesia and coma usually took place within 10 min, although from electroencephalographic evidence it may be assumed that subjects were not completely normal until after 1 to 2 h. No evidence of liver or kidney toxicity was obtained. CI-581 produces pharmacologic effects similar to those reported for phencyclidine, but of shorter duration. The drug deserves further pharmacologic and clinical trials. It is proposed that the words "dissociative anesthetic" be used to describe the mental state produced by this drug.

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