Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) and endoscopic ultrasonography (EUS) procedures in elderly patients are on the rise, and they play an important role in the diagnosis and management of various gastrointestinal diseases. The use of deep sedation in these patients has been established as a safe and effective technique in Western countries; however, it is uncertain if the situation holds true among Asians. The present study aimed to evaluate the age-dependent safety analysis and clinical efficacy of propofol-based deep sedation (PBDS) for ERCP and EUS procedures in adult patients at a World Gastroenterology Organization (WGO) Endoscopy Training Center in Thailand.
We undertook a retrospective review of anesthesia or sedation service records of patients who underwent ERCP and EUS procedures. All procedures were performed by staff endoscopists, and all sedations were administered by anesthesia personnel in the endoscopy room.
PBDS was provided for 491 ERCP and EUS procedures. Of these, 252 patients (mean age, 45.1 + 11.1 years, range 17–65 years) were in the <65 age group, 209 patients (mean age, 71.7 + 4.3 years, range 65–80 years) were in the 65–80 year-old group, and 30 patients (mean age, 84.6 + 4.2 years, range 81–97 years) were in the >80 age group. Common indications for the procedures were pancreatic tumor, cholelithiasis, and gastric tumor. Fentanyl, propofol, and midazolam were the most common sedative drugs used in all three groups. The mean doses of propofol and midazolam in the very old patients were relatively lower than in the other groups. The combination of propofol, midazolam, and fentanyl, as well as propofol and fentanyl, were frequently used in all patients. Sedation-related adverse events and procedure-related complications were not statistically significantly different among the three groups. Hypotension was the most common complication.
In the setting of the WGO Endoscopy Training Center in a developing country, PBDS for ERCP and EUS procedures in elderly patients by trained anesthesia personnel with appropriate monitoring is relatively safe and effective. Although adverse cardiovascular events, including hypotension, in this aged group is common, all adverse events were usually transient, mild, and easily treated, with no sequelae.