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Jackson asked for powerful sedative, nurse says

June 30, 2009 |  7:55 pm

More questions about Michael Jackson’s medications arose Tuesday when a nurse came forward to say that Jackson had asked her in April for a power sedative.

Cherilyn Lee, a registered nurse who operates a Los Angeles-based nutritional counseling business, told CNN that Jackson was complaining of insomnia and pleaded for her to get him some Diprivan (propofol), a drug usually used to start or maintain anesthesia during surgeries.

Lee said she told Jackson “the medication is not safe.”

Four days before Jackson’s death, Lee said, a Jackson staffer called and said the pop star was complaining that one side of his body was hot and the other side was cold .

“You need to go to hospital,” she told the staffer, with Jackson apparently in earshot.

An injection of Diprivan can induce hypnosis within 40 seconds from the start of injection, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The drug’s product label says that propofol should only be administered by people “trained in the administration of general anesthesia.” Sedated patients should be continuously monitored, the product label says, and equipment to provide artificial ventilation, administration of oxygen and instituting CPR “must be immediately available.”

The product label warns that use of propofol for sedating adult and pediatric intensive care unit patients has  been associated with organ system failures that have resulted in death.

--Richard Winton, Rong-Gong Lin II and Kimi Yoshino