The boys rescued from the Thai cave were calmed down with ketamine
According to salvage details published in a medical journal on Thursday, boys are given unspecified doses of ketamine, also known as Party Drugs Special K, from rescue divers as they were exported from the Tham Luang Cave.
The reports at that time suggested that children who had been trapped for two weeks were calmed down during the operation, but the authorities gave little detail. "We had to use the tools that could prevent children from panic while we are running them," said the Thai Navy commander for the rear adm. Arpakorn Yukongkaev told CNN shortly after the rescue. "Most importantly, they are alive and safe."
Detailed descriptions of the cares the boys received in a field hospital as soon as they left the cave, giving a sense of the dangerous nature of the rescue mission.
The first four of the boys were given sunglasses to protect their eyes because they were not exposed to the sun for more than two weeks, and their heads and necks were immobilized in the event of spinal cord injury during narrow-channel travel in the cave. Finally, the patients were wrapped in blankets to prevent hypothermia. The letter said the second boy to leave the cave had a body temperature of 35 degrees Celsius (Fahrenheit 95) when he came out and developed hypothermia on his way to the hospital. Hypothermia can cause damage to vital organs, including the heart and kidneys, and the nervous system.
Medicists say ketamine is a good choice to give to boys, given the risk of hypothermia, as ketamine worsens the shaking and is associated with smaller drops in the body's core temperature.
Ketamine was synthesized for the first time in 1
962 and was used by US Army doctors for American soldiers struggling in Vietnam as a painkiller and sedative. However, its minor hallucinogenic side effects soon warned doctors to cure people, and it became a street drug known to produce a highly similar out-of-body experience. It has also been used as a rape drug.
Today, the most common use of ketamine is as a veterinary anesthetic, although a close cousin of the drug has recently been approved as a treatment for depression. The drug is included in the World Health Organization's main medicines list for adults.
The football team went into the cave after getting on a bicycle to be trapped by the floods on June 23. The boys and their coaches were found alive more than a week later, deep in the cave network and hundreds of meters.
It was clear that every rescue mission would be at risk. The divers involved in the rescue described the conditions as the most extreme they encountered.
The decision to rescue boys was complicated by the death of former Thai seaman Saman Kunan, who had no air as he returned from an operation to supply oxygen tanks to the cave.
Richard Harris, the Australian anesthetist, is one of the two anesthetists in the cave.
"I did not think it would work at all," Harris told National Geographic. "I expected the first two children to drown and then we would have to do something different. I put my chances of surviving to zero.