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Wiley Online Library : Anaesthesia
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A randomised controlled trial of placebo, droperidol or ondansetron to prevent nausea and vomiting after tonsillectomy in children receiving dexamethasone

27. April 2017 - 18:41
Summary

We tested whether prophylactic droperidol and ondansetron, in combination with a moderate dose of dexamethasone, were equally effective in reducing nausea and vomiting after tonsillectomy in children and that both were superior to saline with dexamethasone. We randomly allocated 300 children to intravenous saline, droperidol 10 μg.kg−1 or ondansetron 150 μg.kg−1, after induction of anaesthesia and the administration of intravenous dexamethasone 250 μg.kg−1. The rates (95%CI) of nausea or vomiting within 24 postoperative hours were: 42/91 after saline, 46% (36%–57%); 43/87 after droperidol, 49% (39%–60%); reduced to 18/84 by ondansetron, 21% (13%–32%), p < 0.001. There were no differences in the rates of side-effects between groups. We conclude that ondansetron is more effective than saline in preventing nausea or vomiting after paediatric tonsillectomy when given with a moderate dose of dexamethasone, whereas droperidol was not.

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A randomised controlled trial of propofol vs. thiopentone and desflurane for fatigue after laparoscopic cholecystectomy

26. April 2017 - 6:42
Summary

Fatigue may delay functional recovery after day surgery and may be more common after propofol anaesthesia. We randomly allocated 123 participants scheduled for ambulatory laparoscopic cholecystectomy to induction and maintenance of general anaesthesia with propofol or thiopentone and desflurane. Postoperative fatigue was unaffected by the allocated anaesthetic. The combined mean (SD) Identity-Consequences Fatigue Scale of 34.3 (15.1) before surgery increased in the first postoperative week: to 60.4 (21.1) on day 1, p < 0.001; to 51.1 (17.2) on day 2, p < 0.001; and to 37.5 (16.3) on day 6, p = 0.028. The mean (SD) fatigue reduced at one postoperative month to 22.4 (12.6), 35% less than the combined pre-operative level, p < 0.001. Rates of nausea, vomiting and rescue antie-mesis during the first week after propofol, compared with thiopentone and desflurane, were: 23/63 vs. 32/60, p = 0.27; 8/63 vs. 9/60, p = 0.71; and 12/63 vs. 28/60, p = 0.001, respectively. There were no differences in postoperative pain. In conclusion, fatigue after scheduled laparoscopic cholecystectomy was unaffected by anaesthesia with propofol vs. thiopentone and desflurane.

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Lifebox pulse oximeter implementation in Malawi: evaluation of educational outcomes and impact on oxygen desaturation episodes during anaesthesia

25. April 2017 - 3:05
Summary

Pulse oximetry is an essential monitor for safe anaesthesia but is often not available in low-income countries. The aim of this study was to determine whether the introduction of pulse oximetry with training was feasible and could reduce the incidence of oxygen desaturation during anaesthesia in a low-income country. Pulse oximeters were donated, with training, to 83 non-physician anaesthetists in Malawi. Knowledge was tested immediately before and after training and at follow-up. Providers were asked to record the lowest peripheral oxygen saturation (SpO2) for the first 100 cases anaesthetised after training. The primary clinical outcome was the proportion of cases with an oxygen desaturation event (SpO2 < 90%). Seventy-seven of 83 (93%) participants completed all pre- and post-training tests. Pulse oximetry knowledge improved after training from a median (IQR [range]) score of 39 (37–42 [28–48]) to 44 (42–46 [35–50]) and this knowledge was maintained for 8 months (p < 0.001). Oxygen saturation data and provider responses were recorded for 4772 cases. The proportion of oxygen desaturation episodes decreased from 17.2% to 6.5%, representing a 36% reduction in the odds of an oxygen desaturation event in the second 50 cases compared with the first 50 (OR 0.64, 95%CI 0.50–0.82, p < 0.001). We conclude that donation of pulse oximeters, with training, in Malawi was feasible, improved knowledge and reduced the incidence of oxygen desaturation events.

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A case series of vital signs-controlled, patient-assisted intravenous analgesia (VPIA) using remifentanil for labour and delivery

18. April 2017 - 9:55
Summary

Intravenous remifentanil patient-controlled analgesia can be used during labour as an alternative to epidural analgesia. Adverse effects of opioids, including hypoxia and bradycardia, may lead to maternal morbidity and mortality. We devised an interactive feedback system based on a clinical proportional algorithm, to continuously monitor for adverse effects to enhance safety and better titrate analgesia. This vital signs-controlled, patient-assisted intravenous analgesia with remifentanil used a prototype delivery system linked to a pulse oximeter that evaluated maternal oxygen saturation and heart rate continuously. With this system, we detected oxygen saturation < 95% for more than 60 s in 15 of 29 subjects (52%); and heart rate < 60 min−1 for more than 60 s in 7 of 29 subjects (24%) during use. The system automatically responded appropriately by reducing the dosages and temporarily halting remifentanil administration, thus averting further hypoxia and bradycardia.

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Reliability of pressure waveform analysis to determine correct epidural needle placement in labouring women

17. April 2017 - 12:00
Summary

Pressure waveform analysis provides a reliable confirmatory adjunct to the loss-of-resistance technique to identify the epidural space during thoracic epidural anaesthesia, but its role remains controversial in lumbar epidural analgesia during labour. We performed an observational study in 100 labouring women of the sensitivity and specificity of waveform analysis to determine the correct location of the epidural needle. After obtaining loss-of-resistance, the anaesthetist injected 5 ml saline through the epidural needle (accounting for the volume already used in the loss-of-resistance). Sterile extension tubing, connected to a pressure transducer, was attached to the needle. An investigator determined the presence or absence of a pulsatile waveform, synchronised with the heart rate, on a monitor screen that was not in the view of the anaesthetist or the parturient. A bolus of 4 ml lidocaine 2% with adrenaline 5 μg.ml−1 was administered, and the epidural block was assessed after 15 min. Three women displayed no sensory block at 15 min. The results showed: epidural block present, epidural waveform present 93; epidural block absent, epidural waveform absent 2; epidural block present, epidural waveform absent 4; epidural block absent, epidural waveform present 1. Compared with the use of a local anaesthetic bolus to ascertain the epidural space, the sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values of waveform analysis were 95.9%, 66.7%, 98.9% and 33.3%, respectively. Epidural waveform analysis provides a simple adjunct to loss-of-resistance for confirming needle placement during performance of obstetric epidurals, however, further studies are required before its routine implementation in clinical practice.

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Long-term alterations in monocyte function after elective cardiac surgery

13. April 2017 - 16:16
Summary

Optimal immunological homoeostasis determines the long-term recovery of patients in the postoperative period. The functional adaptability of monocytes plays a pivotal role in adjusting the host's response to an insult, immunostasis and long-term health, and may help to determine successful recovery. We undertook a longitudinal analysis of the functional adaptability of monocytes in 20 patients undergoing heart surgery with cardiopulmonary bypass, as a model of severe stress. Using each patient's pre-cardiopulmonary bypass data as a baseline, we investigated the characteristics of peripheral blood monocytes’ functional plasticity in-vitro before elective bypass, and three months afterwards. Approximately 30% of subjects showed diminished monocyte plasticity, as demonstrated by decreased monocyte differentiation into dendritic cells three months after bypass. Diminished monocyte functional plasticity was related to over-production of macrophage colony-stimulating factor. Adding a neutralising antibody to macrophage colony-stimulating factor corrected the monocytes’ differentiation defect. Finally, patients with reduced monocyte plasticity had significantly elevated serum C-reactive protein, with a concomitant increase in cytomegalovirus IgG antibody titres, suggestive of the acquisition of immuno-suppressive traits. Our study shows that severe surgical stress resulted in a lasting immunological defect in individuals who had seemingly recovered.

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Mock before you block – a reply

12. April 2017 - 7:52
Categories: From Anaesthesia

Mock before you block

12. April 2017 - 7:52
Categories: From Anaesthesia

Issue Information – Editorial Board

12. April 2017 - 7:52
Categories: From Anaesthesia

Non-sticky sticky syringe labels

12. April 2017 - 7:52
Categories: From Anaesthesia