The respiratory, metabolic, and neuroendocrine effects of a new generation electronic control device

Donald M. Dawes, Jeffrey D. Ho, Robert F. Reardon, Seth R. Strote, Rebecca S. Nelson, Erik J. Lundin, Benjamin S. Orozco, Sebastian N. Kunz, James R. Miner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Electronic control devices (ECDs) have become popular in law enforcement because these devices have filled a gap left by other law enforcement devices, tactics, or tools and have been shown to reduce officer and suspect injuries. The TASER X3 is the latest generation device from the manufacturer. This device has the capability of firing three cartridges in a " semi-automatic" mode. This study is the first of the metabolic, neuroendocrine, and respiratory effects of this newer generation device. Methods: This was a prospective, observational study of human subjects. A master instructor shot subjects with a TASER X3 in the anterior thorax with either one or two cartridges. Each subject received a 10-s exposure from the device. Vital signs were measured before and after the exposure. Venous pH, lactate, electrolytes, and catecholamines were measured before and after the exposure. Creatine kinase (CK) was measured before and at 24. h post-exposure. Continuous spirometry was also performed. Results: Fifty-three subjects completed the study. There were no important changes in vital signs or electrolytes. Venous pH, lactate, and catecholamine changes were similar to previous studies on earlier generation devices. There was no evidence of impairment of breathing. CK changes were greater for multiple " circuits" Conclusions: In our study, the respiratory, metabolic, and neuroendocrine effects were similar to previous generation devices. There was an increase in CK with more probes deployed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-60
Number of pages6
JournalForensic Science International
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Apr 15 2011


  • Acidosis
  • Catecholamines
  • Electronic control device
  • Rhabdomyolysis
  • Spirometry


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