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Corticosteroids and Antibiotics for the Treatment of Fulminant Hydrocarbon Aspiration

Russell W. Steele, MD; Richard H. Conklin, MD, PhD; Harold M. Mark, DVM
JAMA. 1972;219(11):1434-1437. doi:10.1001/jama.1972.03190370026006.
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Twenty mongrel dogs were used to examine the efficacy of corticosteroids and antibiotics for the treatment of hydrocarbon aspiration. The animals were randomly assigned to a control or treatment group and were given a median lethal dose of kerosene intratracheally. Treated animals received intramuscularly administered dexamethasone sodium phosphate and ampicillin sodium. There was no statistical difference between the control and treated animals for mortality; respiration and pulse rates; clinical appearance; arterial pH, oxygen pressure, and carbon dioxide pressure; complete blood cell count; serum electrolyte levels; roentgenograms of the chest; or gross and microscopic pulmonary pathologic findings. The results provide no evidence that currently recommended corticosteriods and antibiotics are efficacious in the treatment of fulminant cases of hydrocarbon aspiration.


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