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Effect of TASER on Cardiac, Respiratory and Metabolic Physiology in Human Subjects

NCJ Number
Date Published
Gary M. Vilke MD, Theodore C. Chan MD, Christian Sloane MD, Tom Neuman MD, Edward M. Castillo Ph.D., Fred Kolkhorst Ph.D.
This study examined the effects of a single TASER exposure on markers of physiological stress in humans in a two-phase study, with phase one assessing subjects exposed to a TASER while they were at rest and phase two assessing subjects exposed to a TASER after vigorous exercise.
The study found that 5 seconds of exposure to a TASER X-26 by healthy law enforcement personnel either at rest or after vigorous exercise did not result in clinically significant changes of markers for physiological stress. Measures taken before and for 60 minutes after TASER exposure addressed minute ventilation (VE); tidal-volume (TC); respiratory rate (RR); end-tidal PCO2 (PETCO2); oxygen saturation (O2sat); heart rate (HR); blood pressure (SBP/DBP); arterialized blood for pH, pO2, pCO2, and lactate; venous blood for bicarbonate and electrolyte. VE, TV, and RR increased from baseline at 1 minute after exposure. Blood pH decreased statistically, but clinically insignificantly, from baseline at 1 minute after exposure. Blood lactate increased from baseline through 30 minutes after exposure. Bicarbonate decreased from baseline through 30 minutes after exposure. All of these measures returned to baseline levels. HR and SBP were higher before the TASER exposure than any time afterwards. Ventilation was not interrupted, and there was no evidence of either hypoxemia or CO2 retention. Preliminary results from the study’s phase two (n=22) indicated no significant differences between control and TASER groups after exercise. 4 tables, 3 figures, and 29 references
Date Created: December 22, 2011