Agitation is an acute behavioral emergency requiring immediate intervention. Traditional methods of treating agitated patients, ie, routine restraints and involuntary medication, have been replaced with a much greater emphasis on a noncoercive approach. Experienced practitioners have found that if such interventions are undertaken with genuine commitment, successful outcomes can occur far more often than previously thought possible. In the new paradigm, a 3-step approach is used. First, the patient is verbally engaged; then a collaborative relationship is established; and, finally, the patient is verbally de-escalated out of the agitated state.
Author Affiliation Kimberly Nordstrom, MD, JD Denver Health Medical Center, University of Colorado Denver, Department of Psychiatry, Denver, Colorado Leslie S Zun, MD Mount Sinai Hospital, Chicago Medical School, Department of Emergency Medicine, Chicago, Illinois Michael P Wilson, MD, PhD UC San Diego Health System, Department of Emergency Medicine, San Diego, California Victor Stiebel MD […]