Isopropyl Alcohol Inhalation for Nausea
A recent randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial by Beadle et al. was performed in an ED population complaining of nausea and/or emesis comparing saline versus isopropyl alcohol inhalation. This study found that isopropyl alcohol provided significantly greater relief from nausea in the first 10 minutes of aromatherapy compared to saline (p <0.001).  The mechanism of action is unknown.  Treatment involves three nasal inhalations of a standard ED alcohol wet wipe every 15 minutes, repeated two times as needed.

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[*]Pellegrini J, DeLoge J, Bennett J, Kelly J. Comparison of inhalation of isopropyl alcohol vs promethazine in the treatment of postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) in patients identified as at high risk for developing PONV. AANA J. 2009; 77(4): 293-9. PMID: 19731848
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[*]Beadle KL, Helbling AR, Love SL, April MD, Hunter CJ. Isopropyl Alcohol Nasal Inhalation for Nausea in the Emergency Department: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Ann Emerg Med. 2015; DOI:

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"They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick" -  Jesus of Nazareth

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