Search RHCG Website
Select your language

Ketamine sedation: information leaflet for parents and caregivers

exp date isn't null, but text field is

Emergency Medicine


Ketamine is a medication commonly used in hospitals for sedation in children who require a brief procedure that may be painful or unpleasant. It is injected in to the vein via a drip, and lasts for about half an hour.

Under sedation children can appear awake but they are unaware of their surroundings. They may drool saliva, have watering of the eyes, move a little without an obvious cause, or have twitching movements of the eyes; these are all normal features of Ketamine sedation. Because they are unaware of their surroundings they do not feel any pain, and typically do not remember the procedure at all or only remember small parts.

Editorial Information

Last reviewed: 01 June 2021

Next review: 30 June 2024

Author(s): Dr Kat Smith (Paediatric Grid trainee, RHCG)

Co-Author(s): Dr Steven Foster

Approved By: RHC ED Clinical governance subgroup