Patients admitted to a level 1 trauma centre with traumatic brain injury whose end-tidal CO2 was kept with the Brain Trauma Foundation recommended limits of 30-35 mmHg (3.9-4.6 kPa) had a lower mortality than those whose CO2 was outside this range. The group in which the target was not achieved had a greater injury severity, which may have contribute to the difficulty in optimising ETCO2.
Prehospital Hypocapnia and Poor Outcome After Severe Traumatic Brain Injury
J Trauma. 2009 Jun;66(6):1577-82
Ketamine lowered ICP in brain-injured kids
Ventilated children between the ages of 1 and 16 with traumatic brain injury and elevated intracranial pressure (ICP) were given ketamine and effect on cerebral perfusion pressure (CPP) and ICP was measured. Ketamine decreased ICP while maintaining blood pressure and CPP.
These results refute the notion that ketamine increases ICP. The authors conclude: “Ketamine is a safe and effective drug for patients with traumatic brain injury and intracranial hypertension, and it can possibly be used safely in trauma emergency situations”
Effectiveness of ketamine in decreasing intracranial pressure in children with intracranial hypertension
J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2009 Jul;4(1):40-6 (Full text)