Propofol versus midazolam sedation in patients with cardiogenic shock - an observational propensity-matched study

J Crit Care. 2022 Oct:71:154051. doi: 10.1016/j.jcrc.2022.154051. Epub 2022 May 5.


Purpose: Benzodiazepines are recommended as first line sedative agent in ventilated cardiogenic shock patients, although data regarding the optimal sedation strategy are sparse. The aim of this study was to investigate the hemodynamic effects of propofol versus midazolam sedation in our cardiogenic shock registry.

Materials and methods: Mechanically ventilated patients suffering from cardiogenic shock were retrospectively enrolled from the cardiogenic shock registry of the university hospital of Munich. 174 patients treated predominantly with propofol were matched by propensity-score to 174 patients treated predominantly with midazolam.

Results: Catecholamine doses were similar on admission but significantly lower in the propofol group on days 1-4 of ICU stay. Mortality rate was 38% in the propofol and 52% in the midazolam group after 30 days (p = 0.002). Rate of ≥BARC3 bleeding was significantly lower in the propofol group compared to the midazolam group (p = 0.008). Sedation with midazolam was significantly associated with ICU mortality.

Conclusion: In this observational cohort study, sedation with propofol in comparison to midazolam was linked to a reduced dose of catecholamines, decreased mortality and bleeding rates for patients with cardiogenic shock. Based on this study and in contrast to current recommendations, propofol should be given consideration for sedation in cardiogenic shock patients.

Keywords: Anesthetics; Cardiogenic shock; Midazolam; Propofol; Sedation; VA-ECMO.

Publication types

  • Observational Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Conscious Sedation
  • Humans
  • Hypnotics and Sedatives / therapeutic use
  • Midazolam* / therapeutic use
  • Propofol* / adverse effects
  • Respiration, Artificial
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Shock, Cardiogenic / drug therapy


  • Hypnotics and Sedatives
  • Midazolam
  • Propofol