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Wayne State research reveals improved method for paramedics to stop prolonged seizures
Date:2/16/2012

the goal of treating status epilepticus. This method is as good, and maybe better, than trying to start an IV and administer medication."

The study involved 1,024 patients nationwide. The WSU portion of the study consisted of 178 enrolled patients, the largest group of patients in the study. Paramedics treated patients in the study who were transported to Detroit Receiving Hospital, Sinai Grace Hospital and St. John Hospital.

Paramedics involved in RAMPART used study boxes with a time-stamped voice recorder. This tool allowed them to make quick decisions, indicate the time treatment began and the time the convulsions stopped, all without having to interrupt patient care to record data. The goal of the study was to control seizures within 10 minutes without having to deliver a second dose of medicine.

Since the study involved patients who were severely affected and could not make decisions for themselves, the research was given exception from informed consent parameters. If patients were unconscious after they were transported to the hospital and the seizure had subsided, a member of the study team attempted to contact a family member. If patients later determined that they no longer wished to continue participating in the study after initial treatment, they could opt out. Community consultation was held in advance of the study to raise awareness, ensure transparency and gain input from residents.

Welch said that when the autoinjectors are available they should become standard equipment in EMS units and ambulances. Until that time, he recommended that paramedics administer midazolam intramuscularly in the thigh using a traditional syringe.

RAMPART investigators said that while autoinjectors might someday be available for use by epilepsy patients and their family members, more research is required. Because of the strong sedative effect of midazolam, on-site medical supervision is now required for patient safety.

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Contact: Julie O'Connor
julie.oconnor@wayne.edu
313-577-8845
Wayne State University - Office of the Vice President for Research
Source:Eurekalert

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