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Dexmedetomidine-assisted drug interviews: an observation in psychiatric setting
  1. Devalina Goswami1,
  2. Harshit Garg2,
  3. Hamsenandinie Carounagarane1 and
  4. Koushik Sinha Deb2
  1. 1 Anesthesiology, Pain Medicine and Critical Care, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India, New Delhi, Delhi, India
  2. 2 Department of Psychiatry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Harshit Garg, harshit_medical{at}


Drug-assisted interviews are an effective tool in the management of various psychiatric illnesses where psychopharmacological, as well as routine psychological interventions, do not prove beneficial. These have most commonly been done by using barbiturates and benzodiazepines that have given favourable results for a long time. However, they carry the risk of respiratory depression and difficulty in maintaining the plane of sedation where the patient is amenable to interviewing. In our experience of drug-assisted interviews with two patients we used intravenous dexmedetomidine, which is being used in anaesthesia practice for conscious sedation or sedation in the intensive care unit. We found dexmedetomidine to be superior to thiopentone in achieving a level of conscious sedation where the patients were amenable for an interview, with no significant adverse events and faster post-anaesthetic recovery.

  • anxiety disorders (including ocd and ptsd)
  • anaesthesia
  • drugs: psychiatry
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  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Contributors The authors have jointly collected the data and drafted the case report and share the responsibility of accuracy of its contents. DG and HG were responsible for compilation of the data, conducting relevant review of literature and preparing the draft proposal of the case report. DG and KSD edited the. draft proposal, compiled the analysis and interpretation of review of literature and the discussion, highlighting the relevance of the case. They also conceptualised the case and designed the report after critical review of the proposal, along with supervision of the work of other authors. HC assisted all the other authors in critically analysing and drafting the report to meet the desired excellence.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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