Ketamine (Ketalar)

  • Medication used especially for deep sedation in pediatric patients.
  • Not a primary use drug.
  • Administer drug only with previous experience or under the direction of a provider familiar with its use.

Mechanism of Action

Selectively interrupts cerebral pathways, causing dissociative anesthesia.

Dosage and Administration


Onset of Action

Peak Effect




15 to 30 seconds

5 to 10 minutes

  • Usually 0.25 to 1.0 mg/kg. 
  • Dose is based on patient response to medication.
  • Rate of infusion should not exceed 50 mcg/kg/min.

Adverse Reactions

  • Respiratory effects – bradypnea, dyspnea, respiratory depression, apnea, bronchial smooth muscle relaxation, increased tracheo-bronchial tree secretions
  • Cardiovascular effects – bradycardia, tachycardia, hypertension, hypotension, arrhythmias
  • Musculoskeletal – enhanced skeletal tone
  • CNS  – uncontrolled muscle movements, visual illusions
  • GI – vomiting, increased salivary secretions
  • Special considerations – monitor patient for emergent reactions including vivid dreams, or hallucinations. Consider premedication (midazolam) to reduce potential for symptoms.

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 1

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.