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Emergency Medical Minute


Apr 21, 2021

Contributor:  Aaron Lessen, MD

Educational Pearls:

  • Droperidol for sedation in agitated patients in the emergency department was studied compared to ziprasidone (Geodon) and lorazepam (Ativan)
  • Double-blinded RCT showed droperidol was 65% effective to get patients to a good level of sedation in 15 minutes compared to ativan and geodon which were 25-35% effective
  • Droperidol had less respiratory depression and prolongation of the QT compared to Ativan and Geodon


Martel ML, Driver BE, Miner JR, Biros MH, Cole JB. Randomized Double-blind Trial of Intramuscular Droperidol, Ziprasidone, and Lorazepam for Acute Undifferentiated Agitation in the Emergency Department. Acad Emerg Med. 2021 Apr;28(4):421-434. doi: 10.1111/acem.14124. Epub 2020 Oct 5. PMID: 32888340.

Summarized by John Spartz, MS3 | Edited by Erik Verzemnieks, MD