The suppression of endogenous adrenalin in the prolongation of ketamine anesthesia

Mehmet Aksoy, Ilker Ince, Ali Ahiskalioglu, Aysenur Dostbil, Mine Celik, Mehmet Ibrahim Turan, Nihal Cetin, Bahadir Suleyman, Hamit Hakan Alp, Halis Suleyman

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15 Scopus citations


This study investigated whether or not the anesthetic effect of ketamine in rats is dependent on adrenal gland hormones. The study was performed on two main rat groups, intact and adrenalectomized. Rat were divided into subgroups and given appropriate doses of ketamine, metyrapone or metyrosine. Durations of anesthesia in the groups were then recorded. Endogenous catecholamine levels were measured in samples taken from peripheral blood. This experimental results showed that ketamine did not induce anesthesia in intact rats at doses of 15 or 30. mg/kg, and that at 60. mg/kg anesthesia was established for only 11. min. However, ketamine induced significant anesthesia even at a dose of 30. mg/kg in animals in which production of endogenous catecholamine (adrenalin, noradrenalin dopamine) was inhibited with metyrosine at a level of 45-47%. Ketamine at 60. mg/kg in animals in which endogenous catecholamine was inhibited at a level of 45-47% established anesthesia for 47.6. min. However, ketamine at 30 and 60. mg/kg induced longer anesthesia in adrenalectomized rats with higher noradrenalin and dopamine levels but suppressed adrenalin production. Adrenalin plays an important role in the control of duration of ketamine anesthesia, while noradrenalin, dopamine and corticosterone have no such function. If endogenous adrenalin is suppressed, ketamine can even provide sufficient anesthesia at a 2-fold lower dose. This makes it possible for ketamine to be used in lengthy surgical procedures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)103-107
Number of pages5
JournalMedical Hypotheses
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Medicine


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