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Physiological Model of Excited Delirium

NCJ Number
Date Published
Cynthia Bir Ph.D.
Although the effects of conductive energy weapons (CEWs) on healthy, anesthetized swine and normal human beings are apparently transient, concerns have been raised about their use on vulnerable populations, which include individuals who have a compromised physiology that involves the abnormal state of excited delirium (ED), which may be due to drug abuse or psychosis; the current study used a modified fixed volume hemorrhage model, along with external warming, to create the reported patho-physiology in testing the effects of CEW.
The hemorrhage and hyperthermia completed for this study caused a stress on the subject animals, which resulted in an increase in heart rate and catecholamines, a decrease in mean arterial pressure, a decrease in pH, and an increase in lactate. All five animals in the control hemorrhage and hyperthermia group survived the 4-hour time period after the induction of stress. One of the five animals experienced serious arrhythmias 4 hours after the hemorrhage. The main implication of this research is the use of these findings in guiding a policy related to the use of CEWs in similarly stressful operational scenarios. Such information can be useful to law enforcement agencies when making decisions related to the deployment of CEWs. In addition, knowledge related to the physiological effects of CEW used in compromised individuals is useful to emergency medical personnel for determination of proper medical treatment and the development of treatment protocols. 31 figures and 14 references
Date Created: December 22, 2011