Thiopental : Therapeutic uses, Dosage & Side Effects

Thiopental : Therapeutic uses, Dosage & Side Effects

Thiopentone (Thiopental) is a ultra short acting Barbiturate, used for induction of anesthesia, supplementation of other anesthetic agents etc. It is is generally provided as a sodium salt (i.e. Thiopental sodium).
Dose : 500-1000 mg
Route : Oral, IV
Plasma Half-life : 5.5-26 hours
Duration of action : ?
Bioavailability : ?
Chemical formula : C11H17N2NaO2S
IUPAC name : (RS)-[5-ethyl-4,6-dioxo-5-(pentan-2-yl)-1,4,5,6-tetrahydropyrimidin-2-yl]sulfanide sodium
Trade name : Pentothal, Sodium Pentothal, Trapanal
Therapeutic uses : Thiopentone has following usage :

  • May be used intravenously to induce anesthesia.
  • May be used as mild sedative & hypnotic to relieve anxiety, nervous tension, and insomnia.
  • Occasionally employed as adjuvants in psychosomatic disorders.

Side effects : Thiopentone may cause following Side effects :

  • Drowsiness,
  • Impaired concentration,
  • Mental and physical sluggishness,
  • Mental confusion (& Traffic accidents),
  • Impaired performance,
  • Hangover,
  • Nausea,
  • Dizziness,
  • Idiosyncrasy, excitement,
  • Porphyria,
  • Hypersensitivity reactions e.g. Rashes, swelling of eyelids, lips, etc.
  • Tolerance,
  • Dependence.

Acute barbiturate poisoning Mostly suicidal, sometimes accidental; infrequently encountered now due to inavailability of barbiturates. However, the principles of treatment apply to any CNS depressant poisoning. Manifestations are due to excessive CNS depression- patient is flabby and comatose with shallow and failing respiration, fall in BP and cardiovascular collapse, renal shut down, pulmonary complications, bullous eruptions.
Withdrawl symptoms :

  • Abrupt withdrawal from barbiturates may cause tremors, anxiety, weakness, restlessness, nausea and vomiting, seizures, delirium, and cardiac arrest.
  • Withdrawal is much more severe than that associated with opiates and can result in death. Death may also result from overdose.
  • Severe depression of respiration is coupled with central cardiovascular depression and results in a shock-like condition with shallow, infrequent breathing.

Contraindications :

  • Acute intermittent porphyria
  • Liver and kidney disease
  • Severe pulmonary insufficiency. e.g. emphysema·
  • Obstructive sleep apnoea.

For detailed query or in case of uncertainty, Always consult your doctor or pharmacist.

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