Neurocritical Care

, Volume 29, Issue 3, pp 491–495 | Cite as

Safety and Efficiency of Intravenous Push Lacosamide Administration

  • K. Erin Davidson
  • Joshua Newell
  • Khalid Alsherbini
  • Joseph Krushinski
  • G. Morgan JonesEmail author
Original Article



Intravenous (IV) lacosamide use for status epilepticus has increased in recent years and is recommended for refractory status epilepticus by current guidelines. Per the lacosamide package labeling, the preferred route of administration is diluted and infused over 30–60 min; however, administration undiluted is also acceptable and recent literature demonstrated safety at a maximum rate of 80 mg per minute (Kellinghaus et al. in Acta Neurol Scand 123:137–141, 2011). Undiluted administration as an IV push has potential to increase efficiency of administration to patients needing urgent seizure control since it may be dispensed from automatic dispensing cabinets in patient care areas. This study aims to compare safety outcomes and efficiency of administration in patients receiving lacosamide IV push compared to IV piggyback.


We present a single-center, retrospective cohort study of patients receiving lacosamide via IV piggyback or IV push from June 2016 to July 2017. Baseline characteristics, data related to potential safety concerns and timing of ordering, verification, and administration were collected. The primary safety outcomes were incidence of infusion site reactions, hypotension (systolic blood pressure [SBP] < 90 mm Hg), and bradycardia (heart rate [HR] < 50 beats per minute) documented within 2 h of each lacosamide dose. Secondary safety outcomes included the incidence of PR interval prolongation in patients with at least one electrocardiogram measured. The primary efficiency outcome was the time between order verification and administration.


Patients in the IV piggyback (n = 88) and IV push (n = 78) groups had similar baseline characteristics, initial dose, SBP, and HR. Hypotension (8 vs. 10.3%) and bradycardia (2.3 vs. 2.6%) rates were similar among both groups (p > 0.05). Only one patient in each group had documented PR prolongation, and no documented infusion reactions occurred. Median time from order verification to administration was significantly reduced in the IV push group (35 min vs. 1 h 49 min; p < 0.001).


Administration of lacosamide via IV push results in similar adverse effect rates to IV piggyback preparations with more efficient time to administration.


Seizures Epilepsy Neurology Efficiency 


Author Contributions

KED is responsible for design of the study, acquisition, analysis and interpretation of data as well as drafting, revising, and final manuscript approval; JN, responsible for acquisition of data and final manuscript approval; KAA, responsible for conceptual design of the work and final manuscript approval; JK, responsible for conceptual design and implementation of the work, revising, and final manuscript approval; and GMJ, responsible for conceptual design of study, analysis and interpretation of data, as well as drafting, revising, and final manuscript approval.

Source of Support

No funds were used for the completion of this research.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest to disclose.

Ethical Approval

All data were extracted from the electronic medical record, and the study was approved by the University of Tennessee Institutional Review Board.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature and Neurocritical Care Society 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. Erin Davidson
    • 1
  • Joshua Newell
    • 2
  • Khalid Alsherbini
    • 1
    • 3
  • Joseph Krushinski
    • 1
  • G. Morgan Jones
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Methodist University HospitalMemphisUSA
  2. 2.Department of Clinical Pharmacy and Translational ScienceUniversity of Tennessee Health Sciences CenterMemphisUSA
  3. 3.Department of Neurology and NeurosurgeryUniversity of Tennessee Health Sciences CenterMemphisUSA

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