Sedation for gastrointestinal endoscopy in Australia: what is the same and what is different?

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Abstract

Purpose of review

The purpose of this article is to review the practice of sedation for adults having gastrointestinal endoscopy in Australia and to compare it with practice in other countries.

Recent findings

The practice of sedation for endoscopy in Australia is dominated by anaesthesiologists, who have a preference for deep propofol-based sedation. The recent literature includes a number of guidelines for sedation developed by multidisciplinary groups, anaesthesiologists and gastroenterologists in Australia and other countries. The appropriate health practitioner to provide deep sedation and general anaesthesia, to use propofol for sedation and to manage higher risk patients remains controversial. The estimated risks associated with endoscopy vary by provider, sedation technique and study design (prospective or retrospective, single- or multicentre). New airway management techniques are being investigated that may be useful in patients at high risk of hypoventilation and hypoxia.

Summary

Endoscopy sedation is safe but more high-quality, multicentre observer-blinded randomized controlled trials are required.

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