Early Postoperative Complications After Intracranial Surgery: Comparison Between Total Intravenous and Balanced Anesthesia

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid


This prospective study was performed to compare the incidence of complications occurring after neurosurgical procedures in patients anesthetized with either sevoflurane-fentanyl or propofol-remifentanil anesthesia. We enrolled 162 American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) I to III patients (82 females and 80 males, Glasgow 15) undergoing elective neurosurgical procedures. Anesthesia was conducted using either propofol-remifentanil (T group; n=80 patients) or sevoflurane-fentanyl (S group; n=82 patients). All patients were monitored in the postanesthesia care unit for 6 hours after extubation. We analyzed and compared in both groups the incidence of high severity complications such as respiratory events (PaO2 <90 mm Hg; PaCO2 >45 mm Hg) and neurologic events (seizures, new motor or sensory deficit, unexpected delay of awakening) and the incidence of low severity complications such as hypertension (mean arterial pressure increase above 30% of baseline), hypotension (mean arterial pressure decrease below 30% of baseline), pain, shivering, nausea, and vomiting. A total of 162 complications occurred in 92 patients (57%) with 50 patients (31%) having had 1, 26 patients (16%) having had 2, and 16 patients (10%) having had 3 or more events. The most frequent complication was respiratory impairment (28%) which was frequently reported only in the first postoperative hour. Out of the total number of complicating events, 77 (48 %) were found in group S, and 85 (52%) in group T (P=ns). Severe complications were rarely reported and evenly distributed in the 2 anesthetic groups. Similarly, no difference could be demonstrated in the composite incidence of less serious complications between the 2 anesthetic regimens tested in this study. This study confirms that the recovery period after neurosurgical procedures remains a time of great potential danger to patients given the high incidence of postoperative complicating events independently from the anesthetic strategy.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles