A Literature Review of the Safety and Efficacy of Using Propofol for Sedation in Endoscopy

Indiana University School of Nursing, Indianapolis, IL 46202, USA.
Gastroenterology nursing: the official journal of the Society of Gastroenterology Nurses and Associates (Impact Factor: 0.69). 03/2010; 33(2):111-7. DOI: 10.1097/SGA.0b013e3181d601fb
Source: PubMed


A 2007 survey of members of the Society of Gastroenterology Nurses and Associates identified a need for more evidence regarding sedation medications including propofol. Therefore, the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Cochrane Database of Randomized Clinical Trials, MEDLINE, CINAHL, EMBASE, and the National Guideline Clearinghouse ( databases were individually searched using the term propofol, limited to human, English, 2000-2009, review articles, and randomized clinical trials. A total of 46 resources contributed to this review, with emphasis on 16 studies ranging from retrospective chart reviews to double-blind, randomized controlled trials. Nonanesthesia personnel-administered propofol, including that administered by specially trained nurses under the supervision of an endoscopist, appears to be safe with minor, easily resolved, adverse events occurring in less than 1% of patients. These minor adverse events included four studies reporting hypoxemia requiring occasional intervention, three studies reporting hypotension, and two studies reporting bradycardia. No patients required tracheal intubation, and no deaths were reported.

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    • "The number of gastrointestinal endoscopic procedures performed in the United States has increased between two- and four-fold during the last few years, and more than 98% of routine endoscopies are now performed with sedation [1]. The goals of sedation are analgesia, amnesia, control of patient behavior during the procedure, ability to complete the endoscopy and prompt patient recovery to the pretreatment level of consciousness [2] However, the need for sedation during these procedures is not generally accepted. Traditional sedative agents, such as benzodiazepines, have shown variable outcomes because of unstable levels of sedation [3], which can lead to patient discontent and difficulties in performing the endoscopy. "
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    ABSTRACT: To assess the efficacy and safety of propofol sedation for gastrointestinal endoscopy, we conducted a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) comparing propofol with traditional sedative agents. RCTs comparing the effects of propofol and traditional sedative agents during gastrointestinal endoscopy were found on MEDLINE, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, and EMBASE. Cardiopulmonary complications (i.e., hypoxia, hypotension, arrhythmia, and apnea) and sedation profiles were assessed. Twenty-two original RCTs investigating a total of 1,798 patients, of whom 912 received propofol only and 886 received traditional sedative agents only, met the inclusion criteria. Propofol use was associated with shorter recovery (13 studies, 1,165 patients; WMD -19.75; 95% CI -27.65, 11.86) and discharge times (seven studies, 471 patients; WMD -29.48; 95% CI -44.13, -14.83), higher post-anesthesia recovery scores (four studies, 503 patients; WMD 2.03; 95% CI 1.59, 2.46), better sedation (nine studies, 592 patients; OR 4.78; 95% CI 2.56, 8.93), and greater patient cooperation (six studies, 709 patients; WMD 1.27; 95% CI 0.53, 2.02), as well as more local pain on injection (six studies, 547 patients; OR 10.19; 95% CI 3.93, 26.39). Effects of propofol on cardiopulmonary complications, procedure duration, amnesia, pain during endoscopy, and patient satisfaction were not found to be significantly different from those of traditional sedative agents. Propofol is safe and effective for gastrointestinal endoscopy procedures and is associated with shorter recovery and discharge periods, higher post-anesthesia recovery scores, better sedation, and greater patient cooperation than traditional sedation, without an increase in cardiopulmonary complications. Care should be taken when extrapolating our results to specific practice settings and high-risk patient subgroups.
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    ABSTRACT: To study the anesthetic management of patients undergoing small bowel enteroscopy in the World Gastroenterology Organization (WGO) Endoscopy Training Center in Thailand. Patients who underwent small bowel enteroscopy during the period of March 2005 to March 2011 in Siriraj Gastrointestinal Endoscopy Center were retrospectively analyzed. The patients' characteristics, pre-anesthetic problems, anesthetic techniques, anesthetic agents, anesthetic time, type and route of procedure and anesthesia-related complications were assessed. One hundred and forty-four patients underwent this procedure during the study period. The mean age of the patients was 57.6 ± 17.2 years, and most were American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) class II (53.2%). Indications for this procedure were gastrointestinal bleeding (59.7%), chronic diarrhea (14.3%), protein losing enteropathy (2.6%) and others (23.4%). Hematologic disease, hypertension, heart disease and electrolyte imbalance were the most common pre-anesthetic problems. General anesthesia with endotracheal tube was the anesthetic technique mainly employed (50.6%). The main anesthetic agents administered were fentanyl, propofol and midazolam. The mean anesthetic time was 94.0 ± 50.5 min. Single balloon and oral (antegrade) intubation was the most common type and route of enteroscopy. The anesthesia-related complication rate was relatively high. The overall and cardiovascular-related complication rates including hypotension in the older patient group (aged ≥ 60 years old) were significantly higher than those in the younger group. During anesthetic management for small bowel enteroscopy, special techniques and drugs are not routinely required. However, for safety reasons anesthetic personnel need to optimize the patient's condition.
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