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VOLUME 26 , ISSUE 1 ( January, 2022 ) > List of Articles


Etomidate Compared to Ketamine for Induction during Rapid Sequence Intubation: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis

Saurabh C Sharda, Mandip S Bhatia

Keywords : Airway management, Endotracheal intubation, Etomidate, Intravenous anesthetics, Ketamine, Rapid sequence intubation

Citation Information : Sharda SC, Bhatia MS. Etomidate Compared to Ketamine for Induction during Rapid Sequence Intubation: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Indian J Crit Care Med 2022; 26 (1):108-113.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24086

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 17-01-2022

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2022; The Author(s).


Aims and objectives: The objective of the study was to compare the safety and efficacy of etomidate and ketamine as induction agents for rapid sequence intubation (RSI) in acutely ill patients in emergency department and prehospital settings with respect to post-induction hypotension and first-pass intubation success during RSI. Materials and methods: For this systematic review and meta-analysis, we searched PubMed, Embase, Cochrane, and between database inception and June 1, 2021. Articles were included if they compared safety and efficacy of etomidate vs ketamine as induction agents, in patients undergoing RSI in emergency department and prehospital settings, without any restrictions on study design. The outcome measures were incidence of post-induction hypotension and first-pass intubation success. The dichotomous outcomes were assessed for odds ratio (OR) with 95% confidence interval (CI) using random-effects meta-analysis. Results: Of 87 records identified, 9 were eligible, all assessed as having a low to moderate risk of overall bias. Six studies, including 12,060 patients from prehospital emergency medical services, air medical transport, and emergency department settings, compared post-induction hypotension incidence between etomidate and ketamine groups. The meta-analysis showed that etomidate was associated with decreased risk of post-induction hypotension compared to ketamine (OR: 0.53; 95% CI: 0.31–0.91; I2 = 68%). Seven studies, including 15,574 patients, reported on the rate of first-pass intubation success with etomidate vs ketamine. In the pooled analysis, no differences were seen in first-pass intubation success during RSI using etomidate vs ketamine as the induction agent (OR: 1.13; 95% CI: 0.95–1.36; I2 = 16%). Conclusion: The use of etomidate for induction during RSI is associated with a decreased risk of post-induction hypotension as compared to the use of ketamine, without an impact on the first-pass intubation success rate.

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