Ketamine molecule:

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Ketamine Clinical Trials

Low Dose Ketamine for Acute Pain Crisis in Patients With Sickle Cell Disease

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Id: NCT04330183

Organisation Name: Rhode Island Hospital

Overal Status: Completed

Start Date: July 1, 2020

Last Update: December 23, 2021

Lead Sponsor: Rhode Island Hospital

Brief Summary: BACKGROUND:

Current treatment standard for acute pain crisis in sickle cell disease (SCD) is largely supportive care: opioid analgesics, hydration, oxygen, and blood transfusion. Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a chronic condition associated with serious and disabling acute consequences such as a vaso-occlusive (VOC) or pain crisis. Uncontrolled pain is the hallmark of a VOC, and often results in acute unscheduled care in the patient's clinic or hospital emergency department (ED). During these pain crises, patients sometimes require high doses of opioids for analgesia. Opioid analgesics are fraught with challenges including the development of tolerance, dependence, and opioid-induced hyperalgesia (whereby the use of opioids actually makes patients more sensitive to pain). Finding non-opioid alternatives for intravenous analgesia is problematic based on the limited availability this class of drugs. Ketamine is a potent N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist that even at low doses has demonstrated efficacy as an adjunct to opioids for acute pain control.


The investigators will determine the comparative efficacy of low doses of ketamine as an adjunct to opioids versus standard care (opioids alone) for the treatment of acute severe pain in patients with sickle cell related pain crisis.


The investigators propose a double-blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled pilot study to determine the efficacy of ketamine 0.3mg/kg vs. placebo for the treatment of acute pain crisis. The investigators will include all eligible emergency department ≥18 years. The investigators will stratify 42 patients by location, 21 patients per site. Numeric Rating Scale (NRS) will be recorded as a part of the study log at 0, 1, 2 and 3hrs after the study drug administration.


The investigators hypothesize that the ketamine will decrease overall pain intensity, visit length of stay, and hospitalizations.

  • Sickle Cell Crisis

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