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1.  Safety and efficacy of analgesia-based sedation with remifentanil versus standard hypnotic-based regimens in intensive care unit patients with brain injuries: a randomised, controlled trial [ISRCTN50308308] 
Critical Care  2004;8(4):R268-R280.
This randomised, open-label, observational, multicentre, parallel group study assessed the safety and efficacy of analgesia-based sedation using remifentanil in the neuro-intensive care unit.
Patients aged 18–80 years admitted to the intensive care unit within the previous 24 hours, with acute brain injury or after neurosurgery, intubated, expected to require mechanical ventilation for 1–5 days and requiring daily downward titration of sedation for assessment of neurological function were studied. Patients received one of two treatment regimens. Regimen one consisted of analgesia-based sedation, in which remifentanil (initial rate 9 μg kg-1 h-1) was titrated before the addition of a hypnotic agent (propofol [0.5 mg kg-1 h-1] during days 1–3, midazolam [0.03 mg kg-1 h-1] during days 4 and 5) (n = 84). Regimen two consisted of hypnotic-based sedation: hypnotic agent (propofol days 1–3; midazolam days 4 and 5) and fentanyl (n = 37) or morphine (n = 40) according to routine clinical practice. For each regimen, agents were titrated to achieve optimal sedation (Sedation–Agitation Scale score 1–3) and analgesia (Pain Intensity score 1–2).
Overall, between-patient variability around the time of neurological assessment was statistically significantly smaller when using remifentanil (remifentanil 0.44 versus fentanyl 0.86 [P = 0.024] versus morphine 0.98 [P = 0.006]. Overall, mean neurological assessment times were significantly shorter when using remifentanil (remifentanil 0.41 hour versus fentanyl 0.71 hour [P = 0.001] versus morphine 0.82 hour [P < 0.001]). Patients receiving the remifentanil-based regimen were extubated significantly faster than those treated with morphine (1.0 hour versus 1.93 hour, P = 0.001) but there was no difference between remifentanil and fentanyl. Remifentanil was effective, well tolerated and provided comparable haemodynamic stability to that of the hypnotic-based regimen. Over three times as many users rated analgesia-based sedation with remifentanil as very good or excellent in facilitating assessment of neurological function compared with the hypnotic-based regimen.
Analgesia-based sedation with remifentanil permitted significantly faster and more predictable awakening for neurological assessment. Analgesia-based sedation with remifentanil was very effective, well tolerated and had a similar adverse event and haemodynamic profile to those of hypnotic-based regimens when used in critically ill neuro-intensive care unit patients for up to 5 days.
PMCID: PMC522854  PMID: 15312228
analgesia-based sedation; fentanyl; intensive care; morphine; remifentanil
2.  Remifentanil versus fentanyl for analgesia based sedation to provide patient comfort in the intensive care unit: a randomized, double-blind controlled trial [ISRCTN43755713] 
Critical Care  2003;8(1):R1-R11.
This double-blind, randomized, multicentre study was conducted to compare the efficacy and safety of remifentanil and fentanyl for intensive care unit (ICU) sedation and analgesia.
Intubated cardiac, general postsurgical or medical patients (aged ≥ 18 years), who were mechanically ventilated for 12–72 hours, received remifentanil (9 μg/kg per hour; n = 77) or fentanyl (1.5 μg/kg per hour; n = 75). Initial opioid titration was supplemented with propofol (0.5 mg/kg per hour), if required, to achieve optimal sedation (i.e. a Sedation–Agitation Scale score of 4).
The mean percentages of time in optimal sedation were 88.3% for remifentanil and 89.3% for fentanyl (not significant). Patients with a Sedation–Agitation Scale score of 4 exhibited significantly less between-patient variability in optimal sedation on remifentanil (variance ratio of fentanyl to remifentanil 1.84; P = 0.009). Of patients who received fentanyl 40% required propofol, as compared with 35% of those who received remifentanil (median total doses 683 mg and 378 mg, respectively; P = 0.065). Recovery was rapid (median time to extubation: 1.1 hours for remifentanil and 1.3 hours for fentanyl; not significant). Remifentanil patients who experienced pain did so for significantly longer during extubation (6.5% of the time versus 1.4%; P = 0.013), postextubation (10.2% versus 3.6%; P = 0.001) and post-treatment (13.5% versus 5.1%; P = 0.001), but they exhibited similar haemodynamic stability with no significant differences in adverse event incidence.
Analgesia based sedation with remifentanil titrated to response provided effective sedation and rapid extubation without the need for propofol in most patients. Fentanyl was similar, probably because the dosing algorithm demanded frequent monitoring and adjustment, thereby preventing over-sedation. Rapid offset of analgesia with remifentanil resulted in a greater incidence of pain, highlighting the need for proactive pain management when transitioning to longer acting analgesics, which is difficult within a double-blind study but would be quite possible under normal circumstances.
PMCID: PMC420059  PMID: 14975049
analgesia; analgesia based sedation; critical care; fentanyl; propofol; remifentanil; renal function; sedation
3.  Decreased duration of mechanical ventilation when comparing analgesia-based sedation using remifentanil with standard hypnotic-based sedation for up to 10 days in intensive care unit patients: a randomised trial [ISRCTN47583497] 
Critical Care  2005;9(3):R200-R210.
This randomised, open-label, multicentre study compared the safety and efficacy of an analgesia-based sedation regime using remifentanil with a conventional hypnotic-based sedation regime in critically ill patients requiring prolonged mechanical ventilation for up to 10 days.
One hundred and five randomised patients received either a remifentanil-based sedation regime (initial dose 6 to 9 μg kg-1 h-1 (0.1 to 0.15 μg kg-1 min-1) titrated to response before the addition of midazolam for further sedation (n = 57), or a midazolam-based sedation regime with fentanyl or morphine added for analgesia (n = 48). Patients were sedated to an optimal Sedation–Agitation Scale (SAS) score of 3 or 4 and a pain intensity (PI) score of 1 or 2.
The remifentanil-based sedation regime significantly reduced the duration of mechanical ventilation by more than 2 days (53.5 hours, P = 0.033), and significantly reduced the time from the start of the weaning process to extubation by more than 1 day (26.6 hours, P < 0.001). There was a trend towards shortening the stay in the intensive care unit (ICU) by 1 day. The median time of optimal SAS and PI was the same in both groups. There was a significant difference in the median time to offset of pharmacodynamic effects when discontinuing study medication in patients not extubated at 10 days (remifentanil 0.250 hour, comparator 1.167 hours; P < 0.001). Of the patients treated with remifentanil, 26% did not receive any midazolam during the study. In those patients that did receive midazolam, the use of remifentanil considerably reduced the total dose of midazolam required. Between days 3 and 10 the weighted mean infusion rate of remifentanil remained constant with no evidence of accumulation or of a development of tolerance to remifentanil. There was no difference between the groups in SAS or PI score in the 24 hours after stopping the study medication. Remifentanil was well tolerated.
Analgesia-based sedation with remifentanil was well tolerated; it reduces the duration of mechanical ventilation and improves the weaning process compared with standard hypnotic-based sedation regimes in ICU patients requiring long-term ventilation for up to 10 days.
PMCID: PMC1175879  PMID: 15987391
4.  Sedative Efficacy of Propofol in Patients Intubated/Ventilated after Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Surgery 
Sedation after open heart surgery is important in preventing stress on the heart. The unique sedative features of propofol prompted us to evaluate its potential clinical role in the sedation of post-CABG patients.
To compare propofol-based sedation to midazolam-based sedation after coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery in the intensive care unit (ICU).
Patients and Methods:
Fifty patients who were admitted to the ICU after CABG surgery was randomized into two groups to receive sedation with either midazolam or propofol infusions; and additional analgesia was administered if required. Inclusion criteria were as follows: patients 40-60 years old, hemodynamic stability, ejection fraction (EF) more than 40%; exclusion criteria included patients who required intra-aortic balloon pump or inotropic drugs post-bypass. The same protocol of anesthetic medications was used in both groups. Depth of sedation was monitored using the Ramsay sedation score (RSS). Invasive mean arterial pressure (MAP) and heart rate (HR), arterial blood gas (ABG) and ventilatory parameters were monitored continuously after the start of study drug and until the patients were extubated.
The depth of sedation was almost the same in the two groups (RSS=4.5 in midazolam group vs 4.7 in propofol group; P = 0.259) but the total dose of fentanyl in the midazolam group was significantly more than the propofol group (12.5 mg/hr vs 4 mg/hr) (P = 0.0039). No significant differences were found in MAP (P = 0.51) and HR (P = 0.41) between the groups. The mean extubation time in patients sedated with propofol was shorter than those sedated with midazolam (102 ± 27 min vs 245 ± 42 min, respectively; P < 0.05) but the ICU discharge time was not shorter (47.5 hr vs 36.3 hr, respectively; P = 0.24).
Propofol provided a safe and acceptable sedation for post-CABG surgical patients, significantly reduced the requirement for analgesics, and allowed for more rapid tracheal extubation than midazolam but did not result in earlier ICU discharge.
PMCID: PMC3961039  PMID: 24660162
Propofol; Analgesics; Coronary Artery Bypass; Deep Sedation; Midazolam; Airway Extubation; Length of Stay
5.  Sedation and Analgesia in Intensive Care: A Comparison of Fentanyl and Remifentanil 
Pain Research and Treatment  2011;2011:650320.
Optimal sedation and analgesia are of key importance in intensive care. The aim of this study was to assess the quality of sedoanalgesia and outcome parameters in regimens containing midazolam and either fentanyl or remifentanil. A prospective, randomized, open-label, controlled trial was carried out in the ICU unit of a large teaching hospital in Istanbul over a 9-month period. Thirty-four patients were randomly allocated to receive either a remifentanil-midazolam regimen (R group, n = 17) or a fentanyl-midazolam regimen (F group, n = 17). A strong correlation between Riker Sedation-Agitation Scale (SAS) and Ramsey Scale (RS) measurements was observed. Comparatively, remifentanil provided significantly more potent and rapid analgesia based on Behavioral-Physiological Scale (BPS) measurements and a statistically nonsignificantly shorter time to discharge. On the other hand, remifentanil also caused a significantly sharper fall in heart rate within the first six hours of treatment.
PMCID: PMC3197257  PMID: 22110929
6.  Deep sedation during gastrointestinal endoscopy: Propofol-fentanyl and midazolam-fentanyl regimens 
AIM: To compare deep sedation with propofol-fentanyl and midazolam-fentanyl regimens during upper gastrointestinal endoscopy.
METHODS: After obtaining approval of the research ethics committee and informed consent, 200 patients were evaluated and referred for upper gastrointestinal endoscopy. Patients were randomized to receive propofol-fentanyl or midazolam-fentanyl (n = 100/group). We assessed the level of sedation using the observer’s assessment of alertness/sedation (OAA/S) score and bispectral index (BIS). We evaluated patient and physician satisfaction, as well as the recovery time and complication rates. The statistical analysis was performed using SPSS statistical software and included the Mann-Whitney test, χ2 test, measurement of analysis of variance, and the κ statistic.
RESULTS: The times to induction of sedation, recovery, and discharge were shorter in the propofol-fentanyl group than the midazolam-fentanyl group. According to the OAA/S score, deep sedation events occurred in 25% of the propofol-fentanyl group and 11% of the midazolam-fentanyl group (P = 0.014). Additionally, deep sedation events occurred in 19% of the propofol-fentanyl group and 7% of the midazolam-fentanyl group according to the BIS scale (P = 0.039). There was good concordance between the OAA/S score and BIS for both groups (κ = 0.71 and κ = 0.63, respectively). Oxygen supplementation was required in 42% of the propofol-fentanyl group and 26% of the midazolam-fentanyl group (P = 0.025). The mean time to recovery was 28.82 and 44.13 min in the propofol-fentanyl and midazolam-fentanyl groups, respectively (P < 0.001). There were no severe complications in either group. Although patients were equally satisfied with both drug combinations, physicians were more satisfied with the propofol-fentanyl combination.
CONCLUSION: Deep sedation occurred with propofol-fentanyl and midazolam-fentanyl, but was more frequent in the former. Recovery was faster in the propofol-fentanyl group.
PMCID: PMC3683682  PMID: 23801836
Endoscopy; Deep sedation; Anesthetic administration; Anesthetic dose; Adverse effects
7.  Remifentanil infusion as a modality for opioid-based anaesthesia in paediatric practice 
Indian Journal of Anaesthesia  2010;54(4):318-323.
This study was designed to compare the intra-operative and post-operative analgesic requirements and side effects of using fentanyl infusion versus remifentanil infusion during short-duration surgical procedures in children. The study comprised of 40 children randomly allocated into two equal groups: fentanyl (F-group) or remifentanil (R-group). Both were administered a continuous intravenous (i.v.) infusion. Anaesthetic recovery was assessed using the Brussels sedation scale every 5 min from the time of entry till discharge from recovery room. Post-operative analgesia was assessed throughout the first three post-operative (PO) hours using observational pain–discomfort scale (OPS) and adverse events were recorded. Haemodynamic variables showed a non-significant difference between both the groups. Patients who received remifentanil showed significantly shorter time to spontaneous respiration, eye opening, extubation and verbalization compared to those who received fentanyl. Discharge time was significantly shorter in R-group, and 18 patients fulfilled criteria for recovery-room discharge at ≤25 min with a significant difference in favour of remifentanil. Fentanyl provided significantly better PO analgesia than remifentanil and children in F-group showed a significantly lower mean cumulative OPS record than those in R-group; however, the number of patients requiring rescue analgesia did not show a significant difference between both the groups. Two cases in F-group and one in R-group had bradycardia, one case in R-group had mild hypotension and PO vomiting had occurred in three patients in the F-group and two patients in the R-group. In conclusion, remifentanil is appropriate for opioid-based anaesthesia for paediatric patients as it provides haemodynamic stability and rapid recovery with minimal post-operative side effects.
PMCID: PMC2943701  PMID: 20882174
Opioid based; paediatric; remifentanil
8.  Cost-consequence analysis of remifentanil-based analgo-sedation vs. conventional analgesia and sedation for patients on mechanical ventilation in the Netherlands 
Critical Care  2010;14(6):R195.
Hospitals are increasingly forced to consider the economics of technology use. We estimated the incremental cost-consequences of remifentanil-based analgo-sedation (RS) vs. conventional analgesia and sedation (CS) in patients requiring mechanical ventilation (MV) in the intensive care unit (ICU), using a modelling approach.
A Markov model was developed to describe patient flow in the ICU. The hourly probabilities to move from one state to another were derived from UltiSAFE, a Dutch clinical study involving ICU patients with an expected MV-time of two to three days requiring analgesia and sedation. Study medication was either: CS (morphine or fentanyl combined with propofol, midazolam or lorazepam) or: RS (remifentanil, combined with propofol when required). Study drug costs were derived from the trial, whereas all other ICU costs were estimated separately in a Dutch micro-costing study. All costs were measured from the hospital perspective (price level of 2006). Patients were followed in the model for 28 days. We also studied the sub-population where weaning had started within 72 hours.
The average total 28-day costs were €15,626 with RS versus €17,100 with CS, meaning a difference in costs of €1474 (95% CI -2163, 5110). The average length-of-stay (LOS) in the ICU was 7.6 days in the RS group versus 8.5 days in the CS group (difference 1.0, 95% CI -0.7, 2.6), while the average MV time was 5.0 days for RS versus 6.0 days for CS. Similar differences were found in the subgroup analysis.
Compared to CS, RS significantly decreases the overall costs in the ICU.
Trial Registration NCT00158873.
PMCID: PMC3219979  PMID: 21040558
9.  Dexmedetomidine use in the ICU: Are we there yet? 
Critical Care  2013;17(3):320.
Expanded abstract
Jakob SM, Ruokonen E, Grounds RM, Sarapohja T, Garratt C, Pocock SJ, Bratty JR, Takala J; Dexmedeto midine for Long-Term Sedation Investigators: Dexmedetomidine vesus midazolam or propofol for sedation during prolonged mechanical ventilation: two randomized controlled trials. JAMA 2012, 307:1151-1160.
Long-term sedation with midazolam or propofol in intensive care units (ICUs) has serious adverse effects. Dexmedetomidine, an alpha-2 agonist available for ICU sedation, may reduce the duration of mechanical ventilation and enhance patient comfort.
The objective was to determine the efficacy of dexmedetomidine versus midazolam or propofol (preferred usual care) in maintaining sedation, reducing duration of mechanical ventilation, and improving patients' interaction with nursing care.
Two phase 3 multicenter, randomized, double-blind trials were conducted.
The MIDEX (Midazolam vs. Dexmedetomidine) trial compared midazolam with dexmedetomidine in ICUs of 44 centers in nine European countries. The PRODEX (Propofol vs. Dexmedetomidine) trial compared propofol with dexmedetomidine in 31 centers in six European countries and two centers in Russia.
The subjects were adult ICU patients who were receiving mechanical ventilation and who needed light to moderate sedation for more than 24 hours.
After enrollment, 251 and 249 subjects were randomly assigned midazolam and dexmedetomidine, respectively, in the MIDEX trial, and 247 and 251 subjects were randomly assigned propofol and dexmedetomidine, respectively, in the PRODEX trial. Sedation with dexmedetomidine, midazolam, or propofol; daily sedation stops; and spontaneous breathing trials were employed.
For each trial, investigators tested whether dexmedetomidine was noninferior to control with respect to proportion of time at target sedation level (measured by Richmond Agitation Sedation Scale) and superior to control with respect to duration of mechanical ventilation. Secondary end points were the ability of the patient to communicate pain (measured by using a visual analogue scale [VAS]) and length of ICU stay. Time at target sedation was analyzed in per-protocol (midazolam, n = 233, versus dexmedetomidine, n = 227; propofol, n = 214, versus dexmedetomidine, n = 223) population.
Dexmedetomidine/midazolam ratio in time at target sedation was 1.07 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.97 to 1.18), and dexmedetomidine/propofol ratio in time at target sedation was 1.00 (95% CI 0.92 to 1.08). Median duration of mechanical ventilation appeared shorter with dexmedetomidine (123 hours, interquartile range (IQR) 67 to 337) versus midazolam (164 hours, IQR 92 to 380; P = 0.03) but not with dexmedetomidine (97 hours, IQR 45 to 257) versus propofol (118 hours, IQR 48 to 327; P = 0.24). Patient interaction (measured by using VAS) was improved with dexmedetomidine (estimated score difference versus midazolam 19.7, 95% CI 15.2 to 24.2; P <0.001; and versus propofol 11.2, 95% CI 6.4 to 15.9; P <0.001). Lengths of ICU and hospital stays and mortality rates were similar. Dexmedetomidine versus midazolam patients had more hypotension (51/247 [20.6%] versus 29/250 [11.6%]; P = 0.007) and bradycardia (35/247 [14.2%] versus 13/250 [5.2%]; P <0.001).
Among ICU patients receiving prolonged mechanical ventilation, dexmedetomidine was not inferior to midazolam and propofol in maintaining light to moderate sedation. Dexmedetomidine reduced duration of mechanical ventilation compared with midazolam and improved the ability of patients to communicate pain compared with midazolam and propofol. Greater numbers of adverse effects were associated with dexmedetomidine.
PMCID: PMC3706806  PMID: 23731973
10.  Midazolam and propofol used alone or sequentially for long-term sedation in critically ill, mechanically ventilated patients: a prospective, randomized study 
Critical Care  2014;18(3):R122.
Midazolam and propofol used alone for long-term sedation are associated with adverse effects. Sequential use may reduce the adverse effects, and lead to faster recovery, earlier extubation and lower costs. This study evaluates the effects, safety, and cost of midazolam, propofol, and their sequential use for long-term sedation in critically ill mechanically ventilated patients.
A total of 135 patients who required mechanical ventilation for >3 days were randomly assigned to receive midazolam (group M), propofol (group P), or sequential use of both (group M-P). In group M-P, midazolam was switched to propofol until the patients passed the spontaneous breathing trial (SBT) safety screen. The primary endpoints included recovery time, extubation time and mechanical ventilation time. The secondary endpoints were pharmaceutical cost, total cost of ICU stay, and recollection to mechanical ventilation-related events.
The incidence of agitation following cessation of sedation in group M-P was lower than group M (19.4% versus 48.7%, P = 0.01). The mean percentage of adequate sedation and duration of sedation were similar in the three groups. The recovery time, extubation time and mechanical ventilation time of group M were 58.0 (interquartile range (IQR), 39.0) hours, 45.0 (IQR, 24.5) hours, and 192.0 (IQR, 124.0) hours, respectively; these were significantly longer than the other groups, while they were similar between the other two groups. In the treatment-received analysis, ICU duration was longer in group M than group M-P (P = 0.016). Using an intention-to-treat analysis and a treatment-received analysis, respectively, the pharmaceutical cost of group M-P was lower than group P (P <0.01) and its ICU cost was lower than group M (P <0.01; P = 0.015). The proportion of group M-P with unbearable memory of the uncomfortable events was lower than in group M (11.7% versus 25.0%, P <0.01), while the proportion with no memory was similar (P >0.05). The incidence of hypotension in group M-P was lower than group (P = 0.01).
Sequential use of midazolam and propofol was a safe and effective sedation protocol, with higher clinical effectiveness and better cost-benefit ratio than midazolam or propofol used alone, for long-term sedation of critically ill mechanically ventilated patients.
Trial registration
Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN01173443. Registered 25 February 2014.
PMCID: PMC4095601  PMID: 24935517
11.  Comparison of Propofol-Remifentanil Versus Propofol-Ketamine Deep Sedation for Third Molar Surgery 
Anesthesia Progress  2012;59(3):107-117.
This study aimed to compare continuous intravenous infusion combinations of propofol-remifentanil and propofol-ketamine for deep sedation for surgical extraction of all 4 third molars. In a prospective, randomized, double-blinded controlled study, participants received 1 of 2 sedative combinations for deep sedation for the surgery. Both groups initially received midazolam 0.03 mg/kg for baseline sedation. The control group then received a combination of propofol-remifentanil in a ratio of 10 mg propofol to 5 μg of remifentanil per milliliter, and the experimental group received a combination of propofol-ketamine in a ratio of 10 mg of propofol to 2.5 mg of ketamine per milliliter; both were given at an initial propofol infusion rate of 100 μg/kg/min. Each group received an induction loading bolus of 500 μg/kg of the assigned propofol combination along with the appropriate continuous infusion combination . Measured outcomes included emergence and recovery times, various sedation parameters, hemodynamic and respiratory stability, patient and surgeon satisfaction, postoperative course, and associated drug costs. Thirty-seven participants were enrolled in the study. Both groups demonstrated similar sedation parameters and hemodynamic and respiratory stability; however, the ketamine group had prolonged emergence (13.6 ± 6.6 versus 7.1 ± 3.7 minutes, P = .0009) and recovery (42.9 ± 18.7 versus 24.7 ± 7.6 minutes, P = .0004) times. The prolonged recovery profile of continuously infused propofol-ketamine may limit its effectiveness as an alternative to propofol-remifentanil for deep sedation for third molar extraction and perhaps other short oral surgical procedures, especially in the ambulatory dental setting.
PMCID: PMC3468288  PMID: 23050750
Propofol; Ketamine; Remifentanil; Deep sedation; TIVA
12.  Remifentanil-induced pronociceptive effect and its prevention with pregabalin 
Korean Journal of Anesthesiology  2011;60(3):198-204.
Experimental and clinical studies have suggested that remifentanil probably causes acute tolerance or postinfusion hyperalgesia. This study was designed to confirm whether remifentanil given during propofol anesthesia induced postoperative pain sensitization, and we wanted to investigate whether pregabalin could prevent this pronociceptive effect.
Sixty patients who were scheduled for total abdominal hysterectomy were randomly allocated to receive (1) a placebo as premedication and an intraoperative saline infusion (control group), (2) a placebo as premedication and an intraoperative infusion of remifentanil at a rate of 3-4 ng/ml (remifentanil group), or (3) pregabalin 150 mg as premedication and an intraoperative infusion of remifentanil at a rate of 3-4 ng/ml (pregabalin-remifentanil group). Postoperative pain was controlled by titration of fentanyl in the postanesthetic care unit (PACU), followed by patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) with fentanyl. The patients were evaluated using the visual analogue scale (VAS) for pain scores at rest and after cough, consumption of fentanyl, sedation score and any side effects that were noted over the 48 h postoperative period.
The fentanyl titration dose given in the PACU was significantly larger in the remifentanil group as compared with those of the other two groups. At rest, the VAS pain score in the remifentanil group at 2 h after arrival in the PACU was significantly higher than those in the other two groups.
The results of this study show that remifentanil added to propofol anesthesia causes pain sensitization in the immediate postoperative period. Pretreatment with pregabalin prevents this pronociceptive effect and so this may be useful for the management of acute postoperative pain when remifentanil and propofol are used as anesthetics.
PMCID: PMC3071484  PMID: 21490822
Hyperalgesia; Pregabalin; Remifentanil; Tolerance
13.  Assessment of the effects of ketamine-fentanyl combination versus propofol-remifentanil combination for sedation during endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography 
Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) as a diagnostic and treatment procedure is used in most biliary tract and pancreatic. Either sedation or general anesthesia could be considered for this procedure. Combining a sedative with an opioid agent can provide effective moderate sedation. This study compared the impact of ketamine-fentanyl (KF) versus propofol-remifentanil (PR) on sedation scale in patients undergoing ERCP.
Materials and Methods:
As a double-blinded randomized clinical trial, 80 patients selected by convenient sampling, allocated randomly into two groups. KF group received ketamine 0.5 mg/kg body weight intravenously over 60 s and then fentanyl 1 mcg/kg body weight intravenously. PR group received propofol l mg/kg body weight intravenously over 60 s and then remifentanil 0.05 mcg/kg body weight/min intravenously. Intravenous (IV) infusion of propofol was maintained by 50 mcg/kg body weight/min throughout ERCP. Ramsay Sedation Score, vital signs, oxygen saturation (SpO2), recovery score (modified Aldrete score) and visual analog scales of pain intensity, and endoscopist's satisfaction were considered as measured outcomes. All analysis were analyzed by SPSS Statistics version 22 and using t-test, Chi-square and repeated measured ANOVA and Mann-Whitney tests for data analysis.
Respiratory rate and SpO2 level during the time intervals were lower in PR group (P < 0.001). Sedation score at intervals was not significantly different (P = 0.07). The frequency of apnea in PR group was significantly higher than the KF group (P = 0.003). The percentage of need to supplemental oxygen in PR group was 35.1% that was also significantly higher than 8.8% in the KF group (P = 0.008), but the dosage frequency was significantly higher in KF group (P < 0.001). The KF and PR groups average length of stay in the recovery room were 50.71 standard deviation (SD = 9.99) and 42.57 (SD = 11.99) minutes, respectively, indicating a significant difference (P = 0.003). The mean severity of nausea in KF and PR groups was, respectively, 2.74 confidence interval (CI = 1.68-3.81) and 0.43 (CI = 0.11-0.75), that was significantly higher in KF group (P < 0.001). The average score of surgeon satisfaction in both KF and PR groups were 7.69 (CI = 7.16-8.21) and 8.65 (CI = 8.25-9.05), respectively, which was higher in KF group (P = 0.004), but the average level of patients satisfaction in KF group was 8.86 (CI = 8.53-9.19) and in PR group was 8.95 (CI - 8.54-9.35) that were not significantly different (P = 0.074).
There is no statistically significant difference between KF and PR combinations in sedation score, but PR combination provides better pain control, with less nausea and shorter recovery time while causing more respiratory side effects, that is, apnea and need to oxygen.
PMCID: PMC4268195  PMID: 25535501
Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography; fentanyl; ketamine; propofol; remifentanil
14.  Carbon dioxide accumulation during analgosedated colonoscopy: Comparison of propofol and midazolam 
AIM: To characterize the profiles of alveolar hypoventilation during colonoscopies performed under sedoanalgesia with a combination of alfentanil and either midazolam or propofol.
METHODS: Consecutive patients undergoing routine colonoscopy were randomly assigned to sedation with either propofol or midazolam in an open-labeled design using a titration scheme. All patients received 4 μg/kg per body weight alfentanil for analgesia and 3 L of supplemental oxygen. Oxygen saturation (SpO2) was measured by pulse oximetry (POX), and capnography (PcCO2) was continuously measured using a combined dedicated sensor at the ear lobe. Instances of apnea resulting in measures such as stimulation of the patient, a chin lift, a mask maneuver, or withholding of sedation were recorded. PcCO2 values (as a parameter of sedation-induced hypoventilation) were compared between groups at the following distinct time points: baseline, maximal rise, termination of the procedure and 5 min after termination of the procedure. The number of patients in both study groups who regained baseline PcCO2 values (± 1.5 mmHg) five minutes after the procedure was determined.
RESULTS: A total of 97 patients entered this study. The data from 14 patients were subsequently excluded for clinical procedure-related reasons or for technical problems. Therefore, 83 patients (mean age 62 ± 13 years) were successfully randomized to receive propofol (n = 42) or midazolam (n = 41) for sedation. Most of the patients were classified as American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) II [16 (38%) in the midazolam group and 15 (32%) in the propofol group] and ASA III [14 (33%) and 13 (32%) in the midazolam and propofol groups, respectively]. A mean dose of 5 (4-7) mg of IV midazolam and 131 (70-260) mg of IV propofol was used during the procedure in the corresponding study arms. The mean SpO2 at baseline (%) was 99 ± 1 for the midazolam group and 99 ± 1 for the propofol group. No cases of hypoxemia (SpO2 < 85%) or apnea were recorded. However, an increase in PcCO2 that indicated alveolar hypoventilation occurred in both groups after administration of the first drug and was not detected with pulse oximetry alone. The mean interval between the initiation of sedation and the time when the PcCO2 value increased to more than 2 mmHg was 2.8 ± 1.3 min for midazolam and 2.8 ± 1.1 min for propofol. The mean maximal rise was similar for both drugs: 8.6 ± 3.7 mmHg for midazolam and 7.4 ± 3.2 mmHg for propofol. Five minutes after the end of the procedure, the mean difference from the baseline values was significantly lower for the propofol treatment compared with midazolam (0.9 ± 3.0 mmHg vs 4.3 ± 3.7 mmHg, P = 0.0000169), and significantly more patients in the propofol group had regained their baseline value ± 1.5 mmHg (32 of 41 vs 12 of 42, P = 0.0004).
CONCLUSION: A significantly higher number of patients sedated with propofol had normalized PcCO2 values five minutes after sedation when compared with patients sedated with midazolam.
PMCID: PMC3471107  PMID: 23082055
Colonoscopy; Deep sedation; Propofol; Hypoventilation; Blood gas monitoring; Transcutaneous
15.  Comparison of sedation effectiveness of remifentanil-dexmedetomidine and remifentanil-midazolam combinations and their effects on postoperative cognitive functions in cystoscopies: A randomized clinical trial 
The aim of the study is to compare the effects of remifentanil/dexmedetomidine and remifentanil/midazolam combinations in monitored anesthesia care (MAC) during cystoscopies.
Materials and Methods:
Forty patients who received remifentanil infusion of 0.05 μg kg-1 min-1 for cytoscopy procedure were randomized into two groups: Either dexmedetomidine 1 mg kg-1 (Group D) or midazolam 0.2 mg kg-1 h-1 (Group M) was administered intravenously for the first 10 min. Subsequently, anesthesia was maintained by using the bispectral index as a continuous infusion of dexmedetomidine (0.2-0.7 μg kg-1 h-1) or midazolam (0.05-0.15 μg kg-1 h-1). Heart rate, mean arterial pressure, mini-mental state examination findings, levels of sedation andanalgesia, and the patient's and surgeon's satisfaction were recorded.
Successful sedation and analgesia were achieved in all the patients. We were able to reach the target sedation level faster in Group D (P<0.0001). In Group D, the cognitive functions were less affected than in Group M (P<0.0001). Patient's and surgeon's satisfaction were significantly higher in Group D.
The targeted sedation levels were achieved in a shorter period with dexmedetomidine-remifentanil compared to midazolam-remifentanil. The dexmedetomidine-remifentanil combination was observed to affect the cognitive functions less than midazolam-remifentanil did with shorter recovery times. Besides, patient's and surgeon's satisfaction rates were superior with dexmedetomidine-remifentanil. It was concluded that dexmedetomidine-remifentanil may be a combination of choice for monitored anesthesia care applications in outpatient surgical procedures of short duration.
PMCID: PMC3724369  PMID: 23914211
Dexmedetomidine; midazolam; remifentanil; monitored anesthesia care; mini mental state examination; cystoscopy
16.  The dexmedetomidine concentration required after remifentanil anesthesia is three-fold higher than that after fentanyl anesthesia or that for general sedation in the ICU 
The general dexmedetomidine (DEX) concentration required for sedation of intensive care unit patients is considered to be approximately 0.7 ng/mL. However, higher DEX concentrations are considered to be required for sedation and/or pain management after major surgery using remifentanil. We determined the DEX concentration required after major surgery by using a target-controlled infusion (TCI) system for DEX.
Fourteen patients undergoing surgery for abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAA) were randomly, double-blindly assigned to two groups and underwent fentanyl- or remifentanil-based anesthetic management. DEX TCI was started at the time of closing the peritoneum and continued for 12 hours after stopping propofol administration (M0); DEX TCI was adjusted according to the sedation score and complaints of pain. The doses and concentrations of all anesthetics and postoperative conditions were investigated.
Throughout the observation period, the predicted plasma concentration of DEX in the fentanyl group was stable at approximately 0.7 ng/mL. In contrast, the predicted plasma concentration of DEX in the remifentanil group rapidly increased and stabilized at approximately 2 ng/mL. The actual DEX concentration at 540 minutes after M0 showed a similar trend (0.54±0.14 [fentanyl] versus 1.57±0.39 ng/mL [remifentanil]). In the remifentanil group, the dopamine dose required and the duration of intubation decreased, and urine output increased; however, no other outcomes improved.
The DEX concentration required after AAA surgery with remifentanil was three-fold higher than that required after AAA surgery with fentanyl or the conventional DEX concentration for sedation. High DEX concentration after remifentanil affords some benefits in anesthetic management.
PMCID: PMC4199560  PMID: 25328395
plasma concentration; effect-site concentration (ESC); target-controlled infusion (TCI); abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAA); dopamine; urine output
17.  Comparison between the recovery time of alfentanil and fentanyl in balanced propofol sedation for gastrointestinal and colonoscopy: a prospective, randomized study 
BMC Gastroenterology  2012;12:164.
There is increasing interest in balanced propofol sedation (BPS) titrated to moderate sedation (conscious sedation) for endoscopic procedures. However, few controlled studies on BPS targeted to deep sedation for diagnostic endoscopy were found. Alfentanil, a rapid and short-acting synthetic analog of fentanyl, appears to offer clinically significant advantages over fentanyl during outpatient anesthesia.
It is reasonable to hypothesize that low dose of alfentanil used in BPS might also result in more rapid recovery as compared with fentanyl.
A prospective, randomized and double-blinded clinical trial of alfentanil, midazolam and propofol versus fentanyl, midazolam and propofol in 272 outpatients undergoing diagnostic esophagogastroduodenal endoscopy (EGD) and colonoscopy for health examination were enrolled. Randomization was achieved by using the computer-generated random sequence. Each combination regimen was titrated to deep sedation. The recovery time, patient satisfaction, safety and the efficacy and cost benefit between groups were compared.
260 participants were analyzed, 129 in alfentanil group and 131 in fentanyl group. There is no significant difference in sex, age, body weight, BMI and ASA distribution between two groups. Also, there is no significant difference in recovery time, satisfaction score from patients, propofol consumption, awake time from sedation, and sedation-related cardiopulmonary complications between two groups. Though deep sedation was targeted, all cardiopulmonary complications were minor and transient (10.8%, 28/260). No serious adverse events including the use of flumazenil, assisted ventilation, permanent injury or death, and temporary or permanent interruption of procedure were found in both groups. However, fentanyl is New Taiwan Dollar (NT$) 103 (approximate US$ 4) cheaper than alfentanil, leading to a significant difference in total cost between two groups.
This randomized, double-blinded clinical trial showed that there is no significant difference in the recovery time, satisfaction score from patients, propofol consumption, awake time from sedation, and sedation-related cardiopulmonary complications between the two most common sedation regimens for EGD and colonoscopy in our hospital. However, fentanyl is NT$103 (US$ 4) cheaper than alfentanil in each case.
Trial registration
Institutional Review Board of Buddhist Tzu Chi General Hospital (IRB097-18) and Chinese Clinical Trial Registry (ChiCTR-TRC-12002575)
PMCID: PMC3607964  PMID: 23170921
Balanced propofol sedation; Alfentanil; Fentanyl; Deep sedation; Diagnostic endoscopy; Cost benefit
18.  Respiratory effects of dexmedetomidine in the surgical patient requiring intensive care 
Critical Care  2000;4(5):302-308.
The respiratory effects of dexmedetomidine were retrospectively examined in 33 postsurgical patients involved in a randomised, placebo-controlled trial after extubation in the intensive care unit (ICU). Morphine requirements were reduced by over 50% in patients receiving dexmedetomidine. There were no differences in respiratory rates, oxygen saturations, arterial pH and arterial partial carbon dioxide tension (PaCO2) between the groups. Interestingly the arterial partial oxygen tension (PaO2) : fractional inspired oxygen (FIO2) ratios were statistically significantly higher in the dexmedetomidine group. Dexmedetomidine provides important postsurgical analgesia and appears to have no clinically important adverse effects on respiration in the surgical patient who requires intensive care.
The α2-agonist dexmedetomidine is a new class of sedative drug that is being investigated for use in ICU settings. It is an effective agent for the management of sedation and analgesia after cardiac, general, orthopaedic, head and neck, oncological and vascular surgery in the ICU [1]. Cardiovascular stability was demonstrated, with significant reductions in rate-pressure product during sedation and over the extubation period.
Dexmedetomidine possesses several properties that may additionally benefit those critically ill patients who require sedation. In spontaneously breathing volunteers, intravenous dexmedetomidine caused marked sedation with only mild reductions in resting ventilation at higher doses [2]. Dexmedetomidine reduces the haemodynamic response to intubation and extubation [3,4,5] and attenuates the stress response to surgery [6], as a result of the α2-mediated reduction in sympathetic tone. Therefore, it should be possible to continue sedation with dexmedetomidine over the stressful extubation period without concerns over respiratory depression, while ensuring that haemodynamic stability is preserved.
The present study is a retrospective analysis of the respiratory response to dexmedetomidine in 33 postsurgical patients (who were involved in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial [1]) after extubation in the ICU.
Patients who participated in the present study were admitted after surgery to our general or cardiothoracic ICUs, and were expected to receive at least 6 h of postsurgical sedation and artificial ventilation.
On arrival in the ICU after surgery, patients were randomized to receive either dexmedetomidine or placebo (normal saline) with rescue sedation and analgesia being provided, only if clinically needed, with midazolam and morphine boluses, respectively. Sedation was titrated to maintain a Ramsay Sedation Score [7] of 3 or greater while the patients were intubated, and infusions of study drug were continued for a maximum of 6 h after extubation to achieve a Ramsay Sedation Score of 2 or greater.
The patients were intubated and ventilated with oxygen-enriched air to attain acceptable arterial blood gases, and extubation occurred when clinically indicated. All patients received supplemental oxygen after extubation, which was delivered by a fixed performance device. Assessment of pain was by direct communication with the patient.
Results are expressed as mean ± standard deviation unless otherwise stated. Patient characteristics, operative details and morphine usage were analyzed using the Mann-Whitney U-test. Statistical differences for respiratory measurements between the two groups were determined using analysis of variance for repeated measures, with the Bonferroni test for post hoc comparisons.
Of the 40 patients who participated in the study, seven patients could not be included in the analysis of respiratory function because they did not receive a study drug infusion after extubation. Consequently, data from 33 patients are used in the analysis of respiratory function; 16 received dexmedetomidine and 17 placebo. Inadequate arterial blood gas analysis was available in five patients (two from the dexmedetomidine group, and three from the placebo group). There were no significant differences in patient characteristics and operative details between the groups.
Requirements for morphine were reduced by more than 50% in patients receiving dexmedetomidine when compared with placebo after extubation (0.003 ± 0.004 vs 0.008 ± 0.006 mg/kg per h; P= 0.040).
There were no statistically significant differences between placebo and dexmedetomidine for oxygen saturations measured by pulse oximetry (P= 0.26), respiratory rate (P= 0.16; Fig. 1), arterial pH (P= 0.77) and PaCO2 (P= 0.75; Fig. 2) for the 6 h after extubation.
The dexmedetomidine group showed significantly higher PaO2: FIO2 ratios throughout the 6-h intubation (P= 0.036) and extubation (P= 0.037) periods (Fig. 3). There were no adverse respiratory events seen in either the dexmedetomidine or placebo group.
Respiratory rate for the 6-h periods before and after extubation. (Filled circle) Dexmedetomidine; (Empty circle) placebo. Values are expressed as mean ± standard deviation.
PaCO2 (PCO2) for the 6-h periods before and after extubation, and baseline values (B) on admission to ICU immediately after surgery. (Filled circle) Dexmedetomidine; (Empty circle) placebo. Values are expressed as mean ± standard deviation.
PaO2 : FIO2 ratio for the 6-h periods before and after extubation, and baseline values (B) on admission to ICU immediately after surgery. (Filled circle) Dexmedetomidine; (Empty circle) placebo. Values are expressed as mean ± standard deviation.
Lack of respiratory depression in patients sedated with α2-adrenoceptor agonists was first reported by Maxwell [8] in a study investigating the respiratory effects of clonidine. However, more recent data suggests that clonidine may cause mild respiratory depression in humans [9], and α2-adrenoceptor agonists are well known to produce profound intraoperative hypoxaemia in sheep [10,11]. The effects of dexmedetomidine on other ventilation parameters also appear to be species specific [12].
Belleville et al [2] investigated the ventilatory effects of a 2-min intravenous infusion of dexmedetomidine on human volunteers. According to those investigators, minute ventilation and arterial PaCO2 were mildly decreased and increased, respectively. There was a rightward shift and depression of the hypercapnic response with infusions of 1.0 and 2.0 μg/kg.
Previous studies that investigated the respiratory effects of dexmedetomidine have only been performed in healthy human volunteers, who have received either single intramuscular injections or short (= 10 min) intravenous infusions of dexmedetomidine. It is therefore reassuring that no deleterious clinical effects on respiration and gas exchange were seen in the patients we studied, who were receiving long-term infusions. However, there are important limitations to the present results. No dose/response curve for dexmedetomidine can be formulated from the data, and further investigation is probably ethically difficult to achieve in the spontaneously ventilating intensive care patient. We also have no data on the ventilatory responses to hypercapnia and hypoxia, which would also be difficult to examine practically and ethically. The placebo group received more than twice as much morphine as patients receiving dexmedetomidine infusions after extubation, but there were no differences in respiratory rate or PaCO2 between the groups. We can not therefore determine from this study whether dexmedetomidine has any benefits over morphine from a respiratory perspective.
There were no differences in oxygen saturations between the groups because the administered oxygen concentration was adjusted to maintain satisfactory gas exchange. Interestingly, however, there were statistically significant higher PaO2 : FIO2 ratios in the dexmedetomidine group. This ratio allows for the variation in administered oxygen to patients during the study period, and gives some clinical indication of alveolar gas exchange. However, this variable was not a primary outcome variable for the present study, and may represent a type 1 error, although post hoc analysis reveals that the data have 80% power to detect a significant difference (α value 0.05). Further studies are obviously required.
Sedation continued over the extubation period, has been shown to reduce haemodynamic disturbances and myocardial ischaemia [13]. We have previously shown [1] that dexmedetomidine provides cardiovascular stability, with a reduction in rate-pressure product over the extubation period. A sedative agent that has analgesic properties, minimal effects on respiration and offers ischaemia protection would have enormous potential in the ICU. Dexmedetomidine may fulfill all of these roles, but at present we can only conclude that dexmedetomidine has no deleterious clinical effects on respiration when used in doses that are sufficient to provide adequate sedation and effective analgesia in the surgical population requiring intensive care.
PMCID: PMC29047  PMID: 11056756
α2-Adrenoceptor agonist; analgesia; dexmedetomidine; intensive care; postoperative; respiratory; sedation
19.  Effect of timing of morphine administration during propofol - remifentanil anesthesia on the requirements of post-operative analgesia 
Korean Journal of Anesthesiology  2012;63(3):233-237.
An important concern of intra-operative infusion of remifentanil is the possible development of acute opioid tolerance, which manifests as an increased postoperative analgesia requirement. We have examined the effect of the timing of intra operative morphine administration on the need for morphine consumption for pain control during the first 24 hours after operation.
Sixty adult patients scheduled for elective open unilateral nephrolithotomy surgery were recruited for this prospective randomized double-blind study. Anesthesia was induced with 0.03 mg/kg midazolam, 1 µg/kg remifentanil, and 1.5-2 mg/kg propofol. Anesthesia was maintained with 100 µg/kg/min propofol, and 0.25 µg/kg/min remifentanil. Both groups received 0.1 mg/kg morphine intravenously at 2 different times; in the first group (group E) immediately after intubation and in the second group (group L) 20-30 min before the anticipated end of operation.
There was no difference in pain scores at awakening, the amount of morphine given to the 2 groups for pain control, or the time to discharge from PACU between the 2 groups. The pain scores at admission to ward and at every 4 hours thereafter, until 24 hours, were not significantly different between the 2 groups. The cumulative amount of the first 24 hours morphine consumption in the ward in E group was 28.2 ± 20.1 mg and 26.5 ± 15 mg in L group, respectively (P = 0.71).
Early intra-operative administration of morphine compared to that of morphine in the end of surgery did not affect postoperative morphine consumption and pain scores during the first 24 hours after surgery for open nephrolithotomy. Newer pharmacologic interventions for prevention of acute tolerance of opioids seems rational (Clinical trial registration No. ACTRN: 12609000570280).
PMCID: PMC3460152  PMID: 23060980
Morphine; Postoperative pain; Propofol; Remifentanil
20.  Adjunctive remifentanil infusion in deeply sedated and paralyzed ICU patients during fiberoptic bronchoscopy procedure: a prospective, randomized, controlled study 
Even with an adequate pain assessment, critically ill patients under sedation experience pain during procedures in the intensive care unit (ICU). We evaluated the effects of adjunctive administration of Remifentanil, a short-acting drug, in deeply sedated patient on variation of Bispectral Index (BIS) during a fiberoptic bronchoscopy.
A prospective, randomized, blinded, placebo-controlled study was conducted in 18-bed ICU. Patients needing a tracheal fibroscopy under deep sedation (midazolam (0.1 mg/kg per hour) fentanyl (4 μg/kg per hour)) and neuromuscular blocking (atracurium 0.5 mg/kg) were included in the study. A continuous monitoring of BIS, arterial pressure, and heart rate were realized before, during, and after the fiberoptic exam. An adjunctive continuous placebo or Remifentanil infusion was started just before the fiberoptic exam with a target effect-site concentration of 4 ng/ml using a Base Primea pump.
Mean arterial pressure and heart rates were comparable between the placebo and Remifentanil groups at all times of the procedure. We did not observe differences in the variation of BIS values between the two groups during procedure. We described no change in BIS values relative to the placebo group in this population.
In deeply sedated and paralyzed patients, receiving analgesic support based on a scale score an additional administration of short-acting analgesic drug, such as Remifentanil, seems not to be necessary for acute pain control.
Trial registration
PMCID: PMC3487977  PMID: 22800647
Pain; Intensive care; Bispectral index; Remifentanil
21.  Remifentanil-based total intravenous anesthesia for pediatric rigid bronchoscopy: comparison of adjuvant propofol and ketamine 
Clinics  2014;69(6):372-377.
Laryngoscopy and stimuli inside the trachea cause an intense sympatho-adrenal response. Remifentanil seems to be the optimal opioid for rigid bronchoscopy due to its potent and short-acting properties. The purpose of this study was to compare bolus propofol and ketamine as an adjuvant to remifentanil-based total intravenous anesthesia for pediatric rigid bronchoscopy.
Forty children under 12 years of age who had been scheduled for a rigid bronchoscopy were included in this study. After midazolam premedication, a 1 µg/kg/min remifentanil infusion was started, and patients were randomly allocated to receive either propofol (Group P) or ketamine (Group K) as well as mivacurium for muscle relaxation. Anesthesia was maintained with a 1 µg/kg/min remifentanil infusion and bolus doses of propofol or ketamine. After the rigid bronchoscopy, 0.05 µg/kg/min of remifentanil was maintained until extubation. Hemodynamic parameters, emergence characteristics, and adverse events were evaluated.
The demographic variables were comparable between the two groups. The decrease in mean arterial pressure from baseline values to the lowest values during rigid bronchoscopy was greater in Group P (p = 0.049), while the reduction in the other parameters and the incidence of adverse events were comparable between the two groups. The need for assisted or controlled mask ventilation after extubation was higher in Group K.
Remifentanil-based total intravenous anesthesia with propofol or ketamine as an adjuvant drug along with controlled ventilation is a viable technique for pediatric rigid bronchoscopy. Ketamine does not provide a definite advantage over propofol with respect to hemodynamic stability during rigid bronchoscopy, while propofol seems more suitable during the recovery period.
PMCID: PMC4050329  PMID: 24964299
Rigid Bronchoscopy; Pediatric Anesthesia; Remifentanil; Ketamine; Propofol
22.  The influence of various anesthesia techniques on postoperative recovery and discharge criteria among geriatric patients 
Clinics  2010;65(10):941-946.
We aim to compare selective spinal anesthesia and general anesthesia with regard to postoperative recovery and fast‐track eligibility in day surgeries.
Sixty geriatric outpatient cases, with ASA II‐III physical status and requiring short‐duration transurethral intervention, were enrolled in the study. The cases were split into 2 groups: as general anesthesia (Group GA) and selective spinal anesthesia (Group SSA). Group GA (n = 30) received propofol 2 mg kg‐1 (until loss of eyelash reflex), remifentanil induction 0.5‐1 µg kg‐1, and laryngeal mask. Maintenance was achieved by 4‐6% desflurane in 60% N2O and 40% O2 along with remifentanil infusion at 0.05 µg /kg‐1 /min‐1. Drugs were discontinued after the withdrawal of the ureteroscope, and extubation was carried out with 100% O2. Group SSA (n = 30) received 0.5% spinal anesthesia via L4‐5 space by 0.5% hyperbaric bupivacaine 5 mg. Anesthesia preparation time, time to surgical anesthesia level, postoperative fast‐tracking, and time to White‐Song recovery score of 12, were noted. In the operating room, we evaluated hemodynamics, nausea/vomiting, surgeon and patient satisfaction with anesthesia, perioperative midazolam‐fentanyl administration, postoperative pain, and discharge time.
Anesthesia preparation time, length of surgery, anesthesia‐related time in the operating room, time to sit, and time to walk were significantly low in Group GA (p<0.05), whereas time to fast‐track eligibility, length of stay in the PACU, discharge time, and other parameters were similar in both of the groups.
While anesthesia preparation time, length of surgery, start time of surgery, time to sit, and time to walk were shorter in the General Anesthesia group, time to fast‐track eligibility, phase 1 recovery time, and discharge time were similar among patients subjected to selective spinal anesthesia.
PMCID: PMC2972597  PMID: 21120291
Selective spinal anesthesia; General anesthesia; Postoperative recovery; Fast‐track; Geriatri
23.  Ketamine, propofol and low dose remifentanil versus propofol and remifentanil for ERCP outside the operating room: Is ketamine not only a “rescue drug”? 
Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography ERCP is a painful and long procedure requiring transient deep analgesia and conscious sedation. An ideal anaesthetic that guarantees a rapid and smooth induction, good quality of maintenance, lack of adverse effects and rapid recovery is still lacking.
This study aimed to compare safety and efficacy of a continuous infusion of low dose remifentanil plus ketamine combined with propofol in comparison to the standard regimen dose of remifentanil plus propofol continuous infusion during ERCP.
322 ASAI-III patients, 18–85 years old and scheduled for planned ERCP were randomized. Exclusion criteria were a predictable difficult airway, drug allergy, and ASA IV–V patients.
We evaluated Propofol 1 mg/kg/h plus Remifentanil 0.25 μg/kg/min (GR) vs. Propofol 1 mg/kg/h plus Ketamine 5 μg/kg/min and Remifentanil 0.1 μg/kg/min (GK).
Main outcome measures were respiratory depression, nausea/vomiting, quality of intraoperative conditions, and discharge time. P≤0.05 was statistically significant (95% CI).
Respiratory depression was observed in 25 patients in the GR group compared to 9 patients in the GK group (p=0.0035). ERCP was interrupted in 9 cases of GR vs. no cases in GK; patients ventilated without any complication. Mean discharge time was 20±5 min in GK and 35±6 min in GR (p=0.0078) and transfer to the ward delayed because of nausea and vomiting in 30 patients in GR vs. 5 patients in GK (p=0.0024). Quality of intraoperative conditions was rated highly satisfactory in 92% of GK vs. 67% of GR (p=0.028).
The drug combination used in GK confers clinical advantages because it avoids deep sedation, maintains adequate analgesia with conscious sedation, and achieves lower incidence of postprocedural nausea and vomiting with shorter discharge times.
PMCID: PMC3560648  PMID: 22936194
conscious sedation for ERCP; ketamine; sedation outside the operating room
24.  Daily sedative interruption versus intermittent sedation in mechanically ventilated critically ill patients: a randomized trial 
Daily sedative interruption and intermittent sedation are effective in abbreviating the time on mechanical ventilation. Whether one is superior to the other has not yet been determined. Our aim was to compare daily interruption and intermittent sedation during the mechanical ventilation period in a low nurse staffing ICU.
Adult patients expected to need mechanical ventilation for more than 24 hours were randomly assigned, in a single center, either to daily interruption of continuous sedative and opioid infusion or to intermittent sedation. In both cases, our goal was to maintain a Sedation Agitation Scale (SAS) level of 3 or 4; that is patients should be calm, easily arousable or awakened with verbal stimuli or gentle shaking. Primary outcome was ventilator-free days in 28 days. Secondary outcomes were ICU and hospital mortality, incidence of delirium, nurse workload, self-extubation and psychological distress six months after ICU discharge.
A total of 60 patients were included. There were no differences in the ventilator-free days in 28 days between daily interruption and intermittent sedation (median: 24 versus 25 days, P = 0.160). There were also no differences in ICU mortality (40 versus 23.3%, P = 0.165), hospital mortality (43.3 versus 30%, P = 0.284), incidence of delirium (30 versus 40%, P = 0.472), self-extubation (3.3 versus 6.7%, P = 0.514), and psychological stress six months after ICU discharge. Also, the nurse workload was not different between groups, but it was reduced on day 5 compared to day 1 in both groups (Nurse Activity Score (NAS) in the intermittent sedation group was 54 on day 1 versus 39 on day 5, P < 0.001; NAS in daily interruption group was 53 on day 1 versus 38 on day 5, P < 0.001). Fentanyl and midazolam total dosages per patient were higher in the daily interruption group. The tidal volume was higher in the intermittent sedation group during the first five days of ICU stay.
There was no difference in the number of ventilator-free days in 28 days between both groups. Intermittent sedation was associated with lower sedative and opioid doses.
Trial registration Identifier: NCT00824239.
PMCID: PMC4026117  PMID: 24900938
Sedation; Mechanical ventilation; Conscious sedation; Critical care and outcome assessment
25.  A Comparison between Sedative Effect of Propofol-Fentanyl and Propofol-Midazolam Combinations in Microlaryngeal Surgeries 
Considering the growing trend of laryngeal surgeries and the need to protect the airway during and after surgery, among several therapeutic regimens to induce sedation, two regimens of propofol-fentanyl and propofol-midazolam were compared in microlaryngeal surgeries.
Forty ASA I-II class patients undergoing microlaryngeal surgeries and referring routinely for postoperative visits were randomly recruited into two groups. For all the patients, 0.5 mg/Kg of propofol was used as bolus and then, 50 mcg/Kg/min of the drug was infused intravenously. For one group, 0.03 mg/Kg bolus of midazolam and for the other group, 2 mcg/Kg bolus of fentanyl was administered in combination with propofol. Ramsay system was used in order to evaluate the effect of the two drugs in inducing sedation. The need for additional dose, blood pressure, heart rate, arterial blood oxygen saturation, and also recovery time and adverse effects such as nausea/vomiting and recalling intra-operative memories, were assessed.
The patients in the two groups were not statistically different regarding the number of patients, age, sex, preoperative vital signs, the need for additional doses of propofol, systolic blood pressure and mean systolic blood pressure during laryngoscopy. However, mean systolic blood pressure 1 min after removal of laryngoscope returned faster to the baseline in midazolam group (p < 0.01). Mean heart rate returned sooner to the baseline in fentanyl group following removal of stimulation. Besides, heart rate showed a more reduction following administration of fentanyl (p < 0.02). Mean arterial blood oxygen saturation during laryngoscopy significantly decreased in fentanyl group (p < 0.05) compared to the other group. The time it took to achieve a full consciousness was shorter in midazolam group (p < 0.01). Nausea/vomiting was significantly more prevalent in fentanyl group while the patients in midazolam group apparently experienced more of amnesia, comparatively (p < 0.01).
Inducing laryngeal block and local anesthesia using propofol-midazolam regimen is not only associated with a more rapid recovery and less recalling of unpleasant memories, but also better in preventing reduction of arterial oxygen saturation during laryngoscopy compared with propofol-fentanyl regimen.
PMCID: PMC3813093  PMID: 24250451
Sedation; Microlaryngeal surgery; Propofol; Midazolam; Fentanyl

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