Pharmacokinetics of two per cent rectal methohexitone in children

Robert B. Forbes, David J. Murray, Judith B. Dillman, David L. Dull

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Plasma methohexitone concentrations were determined in 60 children, aged one to six years, following administration of 15mg·kg-1, 20mg·kg-1, 25 mg·kg-1 or30 mg·kg-1 two percent rectal methohexitone. Time to the onset of sleep was determined by a blinded observer and venous blood samples obtained 15, 30, 45 and 120 minutes following drug administration. Fifty of 60 children were asleep within 15 minutes. Nine of the ten children that did not fall asleep were sedate and could be separated easily from their parents to undergo inhalational induction of anaesthesia. Time to the onset of sleep was inversely related to the dose of rectal methohexitone administered. Sleep was achieved more reliably following the use of 25 to 30 mg ·kg-1 rectal methohexitone. In addition, plasma methohexitone concentrations following 30 mg ·kg-1 rectal methohexitone were significantly higher for up to 120 minutes following drug administration than the plasma concentrations achieved after 15 mg·kg-1 or 20 mg·kg-1 methohexitone. There was no difference in the incidence of complications. The authors recommend that clinical circumstances be carefully considered and the dose of rectal methohexitone administered be individualized to meet the specific anaesthetic requirements of each child.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)160-164
Number of pages5
JournalCanadian Journal of Anaesthesia
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 1989


  • anaesthesia: paediatric
  • anaesthetic techniques: rectal
  • anaesthetics
  • methahoxitone
  • pharmacokinetics: kinetics
  • rectal:methohexitone


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