Sedation for Bronchoscopy and Complications in Obese Patients

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Abstract

Background:

Bronchoscopy is a safe and minimally invasive diagnostic tool, but no studies have reported prospectively on sedation and outcomes in patients with objectively defined obesity.

Objectives:

The purpose of the study is to determine if obese patients require more sedation or had more procedural complications during bronchoscopy under moderate sedation than non-obese patients.

Methods:

We evaluated complications and sedation requirements in non-obese versus obese patients, defined by multiple criteria including body mass index (BMI), neck circumference, abdominal height, and Mallampati scores.

Results:

Data were collected prospectively in 258 patients undergoing bronchoscopy under moderate sedation. By varying criteria, there were the following proportions of obese patients: 30% by BMI >30, 39% by neck circumference >40 cm, and 35% by abdominal height >22 cm in males and >20 cm in females. Sedative and analgesic dosing was not clinically significantly higher in obese patients than in non-obese patients. There was no difference in complications or procedural success based on obesity criteria. Hemoglobin oxygen desaturations occurred more often during bronchoscopy in patients with increasing Mallampati scores (p = 0.04), but this had no effect on bronchoscopy time or successful completion of the procedure. A subset of patients with previous polysomnogram-proven obstructive sleep apnea were more likely to have earlier termination of their procedure (15.8%) than patients with no diagnosed sleep apnea (2.3%; p = 0.002).

Conclusion:

In this prospective assessment of patients with obesity, we found neither clinically significant differences in sedation needs nor increases in complications in obese versus non-obese patients using a variety of indices of obesity.

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