Author(s): Tramr MR, Sansonetti A, FuchsBuder T, Rifat K
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Oculocardiac reflex (OCR) and postoperative vomiting are major complications of paediatric strabismus surgery. METHODS: Children (3-16 yr) undergoing elective strabismus surgery as inpatients were randomly allocated to four anaesthetic techniques: (A) thiopentone induction and isoflurane maintenance; (B) as (A) plus ondansetron 5 mg x m(-2) i.v.; (C) propofol induction and maintenance; (D) as (C) plus lignocaine 2 mg x kg(-1) i.v. All children received prophylactic atropine 0.02 mg x kg(-1) and alfentanil. Nitrous oxide was omitted. RESULTS: Data on 157 children were analysed. The cumulative incidence of vomiting within 6 and 24 h after surgery with thiopentone-isoflurane was 26\% and 46\%, respectively. Adding ondansetron decreased the incidence to 8\% and 33\%, respectively. This improvement was significant within 6 h only; the number-needed-to-treat was 5.5 (95\% CI 2.9-46). Propofol was not different from thiopentone-isoflurane. The addition of lignocaine to propofol was of no benefit. The risk of an OCR was significantly increased with propofol (incidence 40\%) compared with isoflurane (14\%); the number-needed-to-harm was 3.9 (95\% CI 2.6-8). CONCLUSIONS: Thiopental-isoflurane-air/O2-alfentanil resulted in a moderate risk of vomiting. Adding ondansetron significantly decreased this risk, but 6 children have to be treated for one to benefit in the early postoperative period. Propofol and propofol-lignocaine showed no benefit on vomiting but significantly increased the risk of an OCR despite high-dose prophylactic atropine.
This article was published in Acta Anaesthesiol Scand
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Ophthalmology